McLaren is a known to adhere to the auto designing philosophy “substance over style,” which places more weight on the functions of a vehicle to create a certain design. So is Porsche. That is the main reason why McLaren will try to woo owners of Porsche vehicles with its new McLaren MP4-12C supercar, according to Anthony Joseph, the head of its North American division.
Of course, many Porsche owners loved buying this carmaker's vehicles because they also place more value on substance over style – something that McLaren will try to take advantage of. No, McLaren won't target current owners of Ferrari vehicles as they don't fit its criteria of clients.
These people usually are attracted to the image and finesse typical of Ferrari vehicles. According to Joseph, there has been a lot of interest for the MP4-12C. In fact, even before the supercar appeared at Pebble Beach in August, McLaren had already expressions of interests from around 2,700 personalities.
Since McLaren plans to just build 1,000 examples of the MP4-12C in the first year of production, it would take just over a third of those interested parties to complete their order for the carmaker to achieve its target. Joseph remarked that McLaren is planning to introduce one new variant of the supercar every year from 2010 to 2015, which means that up to 4,500 units will be assembled for that period.
Ian Gough, McLaren Automotive’s Head of Aerodynamics, remarked that McLaren employed the most advanced equipment available to tune the MP4-12C. He noted that while requirements between the McLaren Formula 1 car and McLaren MP4-12C are different, some features of the supercar were derived directly from the racing machine, like the guide vanes behind the front and rear wheels.
Gough noted though that the turning vanes behind the front wheels of the McLaren Formula 1 car are now disallowed, but those on the underside of the McLaren MP4-12C are intended to divert turbulent airflow created by the wheels. He remarked that the wake from the wheels could interfere with flow of the clean air across the underbody, thereby preventing this clean air to generate downforce when the diffuser rises at the rear.