It had been 12 years since the last time the company’s racers appeared at Le Mans, but McLaren finally announced a comeback to GT sports racing with the development of a new racing car converted from the McLaren MP4-12C high performance sports cars. The new car was developed in cooperation with UK-based CRS Racing. The new GT3 race car was made available exclusively to European privateers since 2012.
Each recipient of the GT3 received full support from both MacLaren and CRS Racing. The 12C-based GT3 boasted of lightweight construction and excellent aerodynamics. The new design, which made use of a moulded carbon chassis called the Monocell, generated just the ideal downforce and aerodynamic factor to ensure excellent racing performance.
In addition to ensuring great functionality, the McLaren-CRS tandem created a car that was also visually appealing to racing car enthusiasts. Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Team Principal Martin Whitmarsh explained that the development of the new GT3 from the 12C is an effort towards maintaining the company’s excellent reputation in GT Racing and other racing events in the world.
Describing the history as “legendary,” Whitmarsh said that the 12C was a natural choice to convert into a GT3 car, adding that potential customers will certainly be drawn to the base architecture’s ease of maintenance and excellent performance record.
Whitmarsh then said that the collaboration with CRS Racing should create a 12C GT3 that should be a hit amongst European racing teams beginning in 2012. Andrew Kirkaldy, Team Principal for CRS Racing, expressed the team’s pride at being able to collaborate with a global brand name in developing a high quality GT-qualified vehicle.
Kirkaldy then said that excellent results can be expected from the 12C GT3, which he said will be a testimony to the engineering experience of the McLaren staff. As to why the 12C GT3 was produced in a limited run, Kirkaldy said that the decision was made in order to ensure good customer service and experience.
The limited-edition 12C GT3 was made available for pre-order by prospective customers through the McLaren GT website. CRS Racing will be manufacturing the 12C GT3 and is set to provide after-market customer support services to buyers. CRS Racing brings its experience in GT Racing to the development and the maintenance of the limited edition 12C GT3.
With Fia GT, International GT Open, British GT and Formula Renault UK Championships under its belt, 12C GT3 buyers are in good hands with CRS Racing.
The 12C GT3 comes after a 12-year absence in the 24 Heures du Mans racetrack. McLaren’s last race in Le Mans involved six McLaren Longtails. Three years before the last McLaren participation in Le Mans, the company had achieved a groundbreaking victory with a McLaren F1 GTR in the same racetrack.