McLaren Automotive looking forward to high performance from Middle East
McLaren Automotive has a rich and seamless heritage in producing premium sports cars for the road: the McLaren F1 road car, which was launched in 1992, set the world land speed record for a production car, and is regarded as one of the best examples of supercar exotica.
McLaren Automotive is now launching a new car company through a global network of highly regarded premium car retailers who will sell a full range of McLaren high-performance sports cars built at an advanced new manufacturing facility, the McLaren Production Centre.
Spun off from the McLaren Group as an independent company in 2009, McLaren Automotive’s new range of sports cars shares the same headquarters in Woking, UK, that today hosts over 50 years of McLaren motorsport and performance sports car heritage.
The Middle East was selected to be McLaren Automotive’s first regional retail network, and includes retailers in Bahrain (Al Ghassan Motors), Kuwait (Ali Alghanim & Sons Automotive), Qatar (Dana Motors), Saudi Arabia (Al Ghassan Motors) and the UAE (Al Habtoor Motors), as well as a service centre in Lebanon (Saad & Trad Sal). The flagship regional dealer – McLaren Dubai – opened its doors on November 9th, 2011, just a day prior to the Motor Show.
McLaren Automotive’s debut model is the MP4-12C. Drawing on the company’s long-standing Formula 1 experience in its concept and development, the 12C will be lighter, more powerful, more fuel efficient and more exclusive than its key competition. It will achieve its performance benchmarks by introducing a unique one-piece moulded carbon chassis into the ‘core’ sports car segment using a new production method. McLaren has not built a racing or road car on anything other than a carbon chassis in 30 years.
McLaren Automotive believes the launch of its new range of high-performance sports cars, starting with the MP4-12C, is a natural next step in the company’s evolution.
McLaren: Racing history highlights
The most successful name in Formula 1, McLaren originated in 1963 when Bruce McLaren established a racing team. From McLaren’s first grand prix in 1965 to date, the team has won 174 races, 12 drivers’ championships and eight constructors’ championships, one of the best records in the sport. McLaren is the only motor racing team to have won Formula 1, Indianapolis 500, Can-Am and Le Mans championships.
During the 1990s, McLaren tried their hand at the Le Mans 24 Hours, the only globally recognised race the team had yet to win. A McLaren F1, slightly modified from the road car, won on its debut in 1995, with a total of four F1s finishing in the top five.
Over its history McLaren has competed in some 700 races and won over 400 podium places. This success was underlined in 2008, when current driver Lewis Hamilton joined the list of great McLaren Formula 1 champions such as Senna, James Hunt, Niki Lauda and Mika Hakkinen.
McLaren Automotive has a rich heritage in producing premium sports cars for the road. The street-legal McLaren F1 model, which was launched in 1992, is regarded by many as the greatest sports car ever produced.
The Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, one of the fastest cars on the streets today, is also the most successful supercar ever in its segment and the most successful selling car with a carbon chassis, with over 2,000 cars sold between 2003 and 2009. The McLaren MP4/22 was Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes’ Formula One car for the 2007 Formula 1 season. The MP4/22 was the most competitive of the season, achieving eight victories and zero mechanical failures in the duration of the season. It was pivotal in Lewis Hamilton achieving six pole positions and five wins to become the most successful rookie in Formula 1 history.