McLaren MP4-12C sports car enters production, 1,000 units targeted for 2011

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 3, 2011

Production has started at the McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) in Woking, England, for the first McLaren MP4-12C high-performance sports car. The 12C had its public world debut at Goodwood Festival of Speed in July 2010. And in August, it made its debut in North America at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.

This was followed by a series of exclusive presentations to potential customers and media worldwide in 2010. McLaren Automotive toured many of the cities that will form a network of 35 retailer launch locations.

McLaren Automotive has a production target of up to 1,000 12Cs in 2011. Most of these will be built in a bespoke new £40m McLaren Production Centre, which will be completed in May on a site adjacent to MTC. The existing MTC production facility has been building the ‘Chassis 01’ ever since the Foster + Partners-designed building opened in 2004.

A new short film provides a quick summary of the milestone events in the 2010 launch year for the McLaren MP4-12C. It features appearances from Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, the 2008 and 2009 FIA Formula 1 Drivers’ World Champions, respectively. Both Hamilton and Button were able to test drive prototype 12Cs while providing feedback on the car’s development.

Likewise, the short film documents visitors’ reactions to the 12C at events where it had its debut. It also features new footage showing Chris Goodwin -- McLaren Automotive’s Chief Test Driver -- winter testing the 12C at Dunsfold Aerodrome, better known as the BBC Top Gear test track.

During this drive, Goodwin assessed ESP calibration on Winter settings as part of the car’s variable Proactive Chassis Control system. Antony Sheriff, McLaren Automotive Managing Director, remarked that after meeting with prospective customers at debut events around the world, McLaren’s genuine desire for launching its own range of sports cars has surged.

He added that customers really appreciate the attributes that McLaren stands for like innovation, technology leadership, and a winning mentality. Sheriff added that in five years, the MP4-12C transformed from a concept developed in a Formula 1 simulator, to an innovative high-performance sports car with distinct technologies.

He described the development program as intensive. He also said that he was excited to deliver the new 12Cs to their future owners.

Sheriff added that customer feedback shows that they understand McLaren’s commitment to delivering high quality sports cars and an incredible ownership experience as well as to winning races as a Formula 1 team. He noted that with ‘Chassis One’ currently in production, McLaren 35-retailer strong network in 19 countries is ready to fulfill its promise.

This short film can be viewed Online at McLaren Automotive’s official You Tube channel at www.youtube.com/mclarenautomotivetv

Press Release

McLAREN AUTOMOTIVE’S FIRST MAJOR MILESTONE OF 2011 AS MP4-12C ENTERS PRODUCTION

Following a successful public world debut at Goodwood Festival of Speed, and a series of exclusive presentations to prospective customers and media across the globe in 2010, the first McLaren MP4-12C high-performance sports car has begun production at the McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) in Woking, England.

McLaren Automotive plans to build up to 1,000 12Cs in 2011. Most will be manufactured in a bespoke new £40m McLaren Production Centre, which is due for completion in May on a site adjacent to MTC. However, ‘Chassis 01’ is being built in the existing MTC production facility, where outstanding quality and highly efficient production methods have been fine-tuned since the Foster + Partners-designed building opened in 2004.

The innovative 12C was first presented to the public at the famous Goodwood Festival of Speed in southern England in July 2010, prior to a North American debut at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in August. 12Cs were then presented at exclusive events to prospective customers and media around the world as McLaren Automotive toured many of the cities that will form a network of 35 retailer launch locations.

Milestone events in the 2010 launch year for the 12C have been captured in a new short film, which can be viewed online at McLaren Automotive’s official You Tube channel: www.youtube.com/mclarenautomotivetv

This short film features appearances from Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, the 2008 and 2009 FIA Formula 1 Drivers’ World Champions. Both have enjoyed testing prototype 12Cs and continue to feed back their thoughts on the car’s development. The video also captures visitors’ reactions to the 12C at its debut events. Brand new footage reveals McLaren Automotive’s Chief Test Driver Chris Goodwin taking the car winter testing at Dunsfold Aerodrome – also known as the BBC Top Gear test track – as he assesses ESP calibration on Winter settings as part of the 12C’s variable Proactive Chassis Control system.

Antony Sheriff, McLaren Automotive Managing Director said: “Meeting our prospective customers at launch events around the world, from Dubai to Cape Town, Paris to Los Angeles, has filled us with inspiration. There is genuine desire for McLaren to be launching our own range of sports cars, and an exciting appreciation of what McLaren stands for: innovation, technology leadership, and a winning mentality.

“In five years, the MP4-12C has evolved from a concept we developed in our own Formula 1 simulator, to a groundbreaking high-performance sports car offering unique technologies and outstanding dynamic performance. It has been an intensive development programme, but now the fun really begins as our future owners look forward to taking delivery of their 12Cs.

“Feedback from our customers shows they understand McLaren Automotive is as committed to delivering a high quality sports cars and a fantastic ownership experience as a our Formula 1 team is to winning races. With ‘Chassis One’ now in production, our new network of 35 retailers in 19 countries worldwide is ready to deliver on this promise.”

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