New McLaren 12C launched

Posted on 18 Mar 2010 by The Manufacturer

McLaren Automotive today officially launched the first model in a new range of high performance road cars which will be produced at its premises in Woking, Surrey.

The MP4-12C, is a lightweight, high-quality, mid-engined two-seat high-performance sports car that the company hopes “will set new standards for car and customer”.

Construction of the new assembly facility, the McLaren Technology Centre (MTC), has already commenced with the first vehicle expected to roll off the plant floor in the first half of next year.

From spring 2011, the 12C, and all future McLaren sports cars, will be produced at the new £40 million MTC which is set to become a showcase facility for the UK’s manufacturing and technology industries.

“We have long held the dream of building a range of McLaren high-performance sports cars that take the raw elements of Formula 1 principles, processes and performance and forge them into a unique package that offers customer-focused requirements of quality, efficiency, and reliability.” says Ron Dennis, Chairman of McLaren Automotive.

“Today’s announcements confirm our intention to challenge convention at the pinnacle of automotive design, from a new high-tech home that I am proud to say will deliver jobs, expertise and innovation in manufacturing and engineering.

“At a time when the UK is rebalancing the economy away from the past two decades’ over-concentration on financial services, we stand alongside other high-tech manufacturing and engineering companies, committed to securing Britain’s global leadership, and securing a sustainable economic future.”

Up to 300 new jobs will be generated directly as a result at McLaren, with many hundreds more indirectly through the construction programme, supply chain, and brand new global retail network.

Head of purchasing for McLaren Automotive Daniel Scaglione says that between 30%-40% of the supply chain for the 12C will be UK based with the first official production commitment already secured. “The UK has so much to offer from a technology perpective and we have very good relationships within our UK supply chain,” says Scaglione.

Up to 1,000 12Cs will be delivered in 2011 through a brand new global network of dedicated McLaren retailers in all major markets in North America, Europe, Middle-East, South Africa, and Asia-Pacific.

The company says the new vehicle will set benchmarks in performance, power, dynamics, efficiency, quality, safety and comfort. It will be the most powerful car in its class with 600PS and 600Nm supporting a 0–200 km/h sprint of under 10 seconds. Vitally, it will also be the most fuel efficient car in its class, aiming to produce less than 300 g/km CO2: the 12C will produce each unit of power more efficiently than virtually every other car in the world featuring an internal combustion engine; petrol, diesel or hybrid.

Over 500 retailers have applied for an initial 35 franchises in 19 countries that will be confirmed by summer 2010. Despite the price tag for the 12C likely to be somewhere in the order of £170,000, initial interest in the vehicle is very strong with 1,600 ‘strong expressions of intent to purchase’, 12 months before launch.

Tim Brown