Ian Gorsuch is back as McLaren chief for Middle East and Africa

Article by Christian A., on July 6, 2013

Ian Gorsuch is reprising his previous role as McLaren's regional director for the Middle East and Africa. Gorsuch returned to his prior post on July 1, 2013, making him in charge once again of running McLaren's operations in the Middle East and Africa as well as overseeing the rollout of the new McLaren P1 hybrid supercar later this year.

He will report to Greg Levine, sales and marketing chief at McLaren. McLaren unveiled the new P1 hybrid supercar at the 2013 Geneva auto show and planned to build only 375 examples, each having a starting price of EUR1.07 million.

McLaren said that around 10 percent of the 375 examples are set to be sold in the Middle East, with nearly all allocation sold. Gorsuch replaced Mark Harrison, who assumed a senior position at McLaren's headquarters in Surrey, England.

Gorsuch started his career at McLaren in 2009, playing a role in launching the sports car maker in the Middle East and Africa as regional director. He was then transferred to Singapore to lead McLaren's operation in Asia. Before working for McLaren, Gorsuch was in Bentley Motors, first in 1998 as customer service director and in 2001 as chief of its business in the Middle East, Africa and India.

Gorsuch will hold office in Bahrain, where the regional base of McLaren Automotive Middle East and Africa is located. Bahrain is also home to McLaren's principal shareholder, Mumtalakat, a government-controlled holding company. McLaren delivered 150 units of the current McLaren 12C model in the Middle East and Africa in 2012.

Commenting on his new Regional Director role Gorsuch said: “I’m thrilled to be moving back to a region I know well, and inherit the role in a very strong position. This is thanks to the work over the last year by Mark and our network of retail partners in eight locations, across six countries in the region.” Gorsuch continued: “I am looking forward to the meeting our 12C and 12C Spider customers and seeing our next generation ultimate supercar, the McLaren P1, on the region’s roads as we start delivering the first cars to customers at the end of the year.”

Right from the start, McLaren has intended the new P1 – the production form of which was unveiled at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show – to become the best driver's car in the world, both on the road and on the track. This is a difficult objective, but McLaren is building on its five decades of racing experience and success as well as on its expertise in the fields of aerodynamics and lightweight carbon fiber technology.

By setting this goal and taking advantage of its strengths, McLaren was able to create a car that generates massive amount of downforce similar to that of a GT3 racing car, but with a greater ground effect. This massive downforce helps the P1 achieve high levels of performance during cornering and braking. Likewise, this high level of downforce helps the P1 achieve greater degrees of balance, stability and drivability at any speed.

McLaren Automotive Executive Chairman Ron Dennis noted that the carmaker – through the MP4/1 -- was responsible for introducing the carbon fiber chassis into Formula One in 1981, adding the British company was also the first to create a carbon-bodied road car. This expertise, along with its strengths in vehicle aerodynamics and racing experience, were useful in creating the new McLaren P1. He added that while McLaren F1 hiked the supercar performance bar around 20 years ago, the McLaren P1 has redefined it.

To deliver outstanding straight-line performance and instant throttle response, the McLaren P1 employs the groundbreaking IPAS petrol-electric powertrain (M838TQ) that includes a revised 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 petrol engine and a single electric motor. IPAS generates a massive combined power output of 916 PS (903 hp) and thanks to the integration of the electric motor, instant torque is delivered as well for a more responsive sprint. Impressively, the IPAS only emits less than 200 grams of carbon dioxide per km, and could travel over 10 km when driven in pure electric mode.

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