Home > News > NEWS: McLaren’s new supercar to give Lamborghini and Ferrari a run for their pasta *Picture intensive*

NEWS: McLaren’s new supercar to give Lamborghini and Ferrari a run for their pasta *Picture intensive*

The company from Woking, England has kindly extended some of the MP4-12C’s vital statistics earlier in the week and it’s safe to say they’re set on making the rest of the supercar fraternity nervous.

“Below three seconds“.

That’s the estimate McLaren gave reporters for the MC4-12C’s 0-100 km/h timing.

To put that in perspective, that’s faster than Nissan’s supercar slayer, the GTR @3.5 seconds, the Lamborghini LP560-4 @3.4 seconds, Ferrari’s brand new 458 Italia @3.3 seconds and Porsche’s 2010 911 Turbo @3.2 seconds.

How it manages such impressive an impressive feat you might ask? There are two main contributing factors.

The heart

A twin-turbo V8 engine, said to have been designed, developed and produced in-house (industry insiders argue that Cosworth had a hand in it as well), finds its way just behind the two seats in the car. Paired up to a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, the engine’s estimated 600 bhp and 600 Nm of torque is easily tamed by the steering wheel mounted pedal shift system we’ve all grown used to.

In an effort to differentiate itself from the rest of the field though, the MC4-12C allows the driver to depress the pedal shift half way, the same way you would when focusing on a DSLR or digital camera. What this does is it “pre-cogs” the gear, getting it ready for the shift up or down – making for a faster swap altogether.

McLaren was actually quick to mention that 80% of the torque is available as low down as 2,000 rpm, and the car doesn’t even have a differential for slip!

The transmission does feature a number of modes – auto, sport, winter and a launch control setting. With the space around the driver optimized for a two pedal system, McLaren has ruled out a manual version of their MP4-12C.

Stopping power come in the form of composite brakes as standard but the buyer has the option of carbon ceramics.

Weight savings

In 1981 McLaren pioneered carbon fibre composite tubs in Formula 1 and with the F1 supercar, brought the aerospace derived material to the road. For the MP4-12C a new, cost-effective construction method was devised that allows McLaren to construct the entire tub in a single piece instead of having to bond different parts together. Known internally as the ‘MonoCell’, the hollow monocoque chassis is extremely rigid yet only weighs 80 kg.

This cut in production time and costs is what enabled McLaren to use a carbon fibre tub in a market dominated by aluminium and steel constructions.

In the first year McLaren plans to build around 1,000 examples in a new, purpose-built factory. Over the following years McLaren plans to add one new model to the line-up every year. Ron Dennis, F1 legend and executive chairman of McLaren Automotive, has made it very clear. He introduced the new company and said that it is “aimed directly at the Ferraris, Lamborghinis, and Porsches of the world”.

We’ll have to wait and see if the car does perform well on the roads as well as it might seem like on paper but with the likes of the F1 supercar under its belt, any doubt is unfounded.

Till then, enjoy the slideshow here.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Not big enough? Click here to experience the pictures in glorious high resolution!

UPDATE: Think the car is still some distance away from reaching Singapore? Think again.

In a press release, McLaren listed Singapore as one of the countries awarded and appointed with an agent for the McLaren cars. As we speak 10 test mules are on some snow track in Sweden or the desert plains of America putting their systems to the test and fine-tuning the car before its first delivery.

Talking with some of the more affluent local supercar connosuiers, they did express a substantial interest in the new car from McLaren as a breath of fresh air and some even went as far as to say they might let their prized bulls and stallions go for this baby.

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