Through a combination of carbon fibre expertise, innovative Formula 1-inspired technologies and development programmes, and a desire to launch a range of ‘pure McLaren’ road cars, the groundbreaking new McLaren MP4-12C has redefined high-performance sports car benchmarks. By March 2010, when the 12C was first revealed, McLaren Automotive was close to achieving its own high performance targets within the intensive testing and development programme. Key segment targets included:
• lowest CO2 output and best fuel consumption
• highest power with fastest acceleration and braking across all typical benchmark speed and distance parameters
• lightest weight, and therefore highest power to weight ratio
All within a package of more subjective, but equally important, benchmarks: comfort, practicality, driveability, and ownership costs. To be a success, and bring innovation to the market, the manufacturer knew the McLaren MP4-12C had to be the first genuine ‘no compromise’ high-performance sports car.
Now, as the first production cars enter the McLaren Technology Centre, segment-best performance data is confirmed. Headline figures for the McLaren MP4-12C include:
• 0 – 200kph in 9.1s (8.9s on optional Corsa tyres)
• CO2 emissions of 279g/km (equating to 24.2 EU mpg combined)
• 0 – 100kph in 3.3s (3.1s with optional Corsa tyres)
• top speed: 330kph (205mph)
• 100 – 0 kph in 30.5 m (100 ft)
• ¼ mile: 10.9s @ 135 mph
• dry weight (with lightweight options): 1301kgs / 2868 lbs
• carbon MonoCell chassis weight: 75kgs / 165 lbs
• power: weight (lightweight options): 461PS / 455bhp per tonne.
• power: 600PS (592bhp) at 7,000 rpm
• torque: 600Nm between 3,000 – 7,000 rpm
The McLaren MP4-12C has been created at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking, UK under the same roof as McLaren Racing and the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Formula 1 team: ‘performance’ lies at the heart of the 12C and the McLaren Automotive team responsible for its design, development, engineering and now manufacture.
The McLaren MP4-12C’s performance is clearly influenced by the McLaren F1 and Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren road car projects. Most notably, in the competitive step-changes seen on the McLaren MP4-12C through carbon composite engineering, packaging, and aerodynamics. But the development and manufacturing teams are also peppered with technicians and engineers from iconic periods in McLaren’s motor racing history: people with priceless experience in challenging design target-setting and innovative engineering problem-solving. And with an inherent ambition to win.
Starting from a clean sheet of paper, the McLaren MP4-12C is the first ‘pure McLaren’. From its conception, the 12C has been designed around the driver with a carbon chassis. Every one of the McLaren MP4-12C’s components is bespoke, and there to either enhance performance or contribute to the unmatched driving experience.