McLaren introduces new sports car
Dubai, September 9, 2009
McLaren Automotive, the independent car division based at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking, England, has revealed first details of the debut high performance sports car, the McLaren MP4-12C.
Drawing on McLaren’s long-standing Formula 1 experience, the McLaren MP4-12C will challenge the very best sports cars on the market when it arrives in the Middle East in 2011, said a statement.
The company has already confirmed that it is seeking retailers in Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. It is also looking at the possibility of establishing a service centre in Lebanon.
At its heart, the McLaren MP4-12C features a revolutionary carbon fibre chassis structure, the carbon MonoCell: the first time a car in this market segment has been based around such a strong and lightweight racing car engineering solution and the first time any car has ever featured a one-piece carbon fibre structure.
This step change in sports car design means that the 12C introduces new standards not just in handling, ride and outright performance, but also safety, economy and practicality in an already competitive sector.
All the parts of the 12C are unique to this car. Everything from the engine right down to the tailor-made switches and buttons is pure McLaren: nothing has come from another manufacturer’s parts bin.
The 12C is equipped with a bespoke McLaren ‘M838T’ 3.8-litre, V8 twin-turbo engine producing around 600bhp, driving through a McLaren seven speed seamless shift dual clutch gearbox (SSG).
The McLaren MP4-12C is a high-performance two-seat mid-engine model in the ‘core’ sports car market segment for cars costing between GBP125,000 ($206,000) and GBP175,000 ($288,000). It is pure McLaren, featuring no carryover parts from any other car.
“The Middle East will be a key market for McLaren Automotive, so we have worked hard to ensure that the 12C will be perfectly suited to the marketplace,” said Ian Gorsuch, McLaren Automotive’s regional director for the Middle East and Africa.
“This has included conducting hot weather testing in the region to experience the uniquely challenging summer conditions that exist here,” he added.
“When it comes to high-performance sports cars, customers in the region are exceptionally well-informed and passionate,” Gorsuch continued.
“In the 12C, which draws on the spirit of Formula 1 and delivers real-world technological advances, we have a model that will set new standards in its segment.
The MonoCell enables us to deliver technologies and performance from the higher performance car segment, so this is an exciting development for Middle East car enthusiasts. I am sure that there will be great interest and strong demand when the car is launched here in early 2011.”
“We began designing and building cars for aficionados of thoroughbred sports cars almost 20 years ago,” said Ron Dennis, chairman of McLaren Automotive.
“Incorporating the leading edge technologies that the McLaren Group has built up within its various companies, I believe we are now perfectly placed to open up this new chapter in McLaren’s history as well as play a part in the regeneration of high-tech manufacturing in the UK and the global automotive environment,” he concluded.
Antony Sheriff, McLaren Automotive managing director, said: “McLaren is already a car maker with maturity and experience, having produced iconic cars such as the F1.”
“The next step was to construct a range of pure McLaren high-performance sports cars that are true to the company’s philosophy and reflect our position as an absolute technology and performance leader,” Sheriff added.
“So, when we embarked on the 12C project, we wanted to re-write the rules of sports car design. Indeed, the 12C offers performance and technology that exceeds that of the world’s most expensive and sophisticated supercars, while competing in a much more ac