It’s been several years in the making, but at a press conference held this morning at its factory in Woking, England, Mclaren Automotive finally unveiled the successor to its legendary F1: the MP4-12C.
We first saw photos of the two-passenger, mid-engined sports car late last year, but McLaren is finally talking more specifics. Arguably, this car is more homemade than the F1 was: Virtually every aspect of the car, including the powertrain, was designed and will be manufactured in-house.
It’s easy to see how engineers were inspired by McLaren’s Formula 1 program. A carbon fiber safety cell surrounds the driver and passenger, while the twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V-8 is compact, powerful (600 hp), and capable of revving to a frenetic 8500-rpm redline. A seven-speed dual-clutch transmission -- also inspired by those used in the race cars -- will be the only gearbox offered.
That entire system -- coupled with the extensive use of carbon fiber and aluminum throughout the car's construction -- allows the MP4-12C to return some amazing performance figures. According to the company, the car can rocket from 0-125 mph in under 10 seconds, sprint through a quarter-mile in 11 seconds, and hit a top speed of over 200 mph. Conversely, it can slow from 125 mph to a stop in under 5 seconds -- stops from 62 mph, it seems, can be performed in less than seven car lengths.
Perhaps the best news about the MP4-12C lies with the business case McLaren has crafted alongside it. Unlike the F1, which was never road-legal in North America, the new car is fully certified to be sold in the U.S., and can be purchased through a small dealer network of roughly 10 showrooms.
Our editors are currently live on the scene in Woking, so check back later today to learn more on the MP4-12C, along with McLaren’s plan on selling its supercar across the globe.