A new year, new paint job and a perfect start for Kiwi V8 Supercars driver Scott McLaughlin.

The Volvo driver recorded the fastest time in the first two practice sessions ahead of the Clipsal 500 on the streets of Adelaide.

Fellow Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen was fourth fastest in his Red Bull Holden during the first session but third fastest in the later session, while Fabian Coulthard was seventh quickest in the first but outside the top 10 in the second.

Adelaide is forecast to hit 34 degrees on Friday, rising further on race days to reach 39 on Saturday and 38 on Sunday.

Van Gisbergen said even with the sport's safety features, the temperatures would still make for a gruelling weekend.

"We have cool suits and helmet fans in the car so we're prepared for everything but if one of those fails it will be a race ender," he said.

"(The cool suits pump) cold frozen water over your body so it does help but when it's up to 60 or more in the car it's very hot.

"When you're racing for more than an hour or two hours on Sunday, it's not easy."

Advertisement