McLaren’s new supercar, the MP4-12C

McLaren MP412C side

McLaren have recently announced pricing for their latest supercar, the MP4-12C. The car has one aim, and that’s to compete with the Ferrari 458 Italia. Therefore it’s no coincidence that the McLaren will be selling it at an almost identical price to the Ferrari.

The British supercar will go on sale from Spring 2011 priced at £168,500. Though this excludes the mandatory £950 first year road fund licence and £55 registration fee, which when added in brings the total to £169,505. That’s just £41 cheaper than the Ferrari, which is no accident.

There’s no word yet on how much the large range of optional extras will cost, such as the sports exhaust, lightweight wheels and carbon ceramic brakes. There will also be the option to swap certain parts for lighter replacement carbon fibre ones, including mirror caps, engine panels and the engine cover.

McLaren MP412C black

The entire chassis is built from carbon, McLaren have called it the ‘MonoCell’. It’s the first car to offer such a technologically advanced chassis and hugely helps in keeping the weight of the car to just 1300kg. Pretty impressive considering the 458 weighs 1485kg.

Powering the MP4-12C is a 3.8 litre engine producing 600 PS (about 595bhp) and only spewing out 300g/km of CO2.

The car is built in the same factory that produces McLaren’s F1 cars, based in Woking. They plan on building 4,000 a year at the factory. ]

McLaren MP412C doors


The McLaren has been built with one key objective, to beat Ferrari. They’re arch enemies in F1 and determined to beat each other when it comes to road cars too. Price differences aren’t really an issue for the sort of customers who buy these cars, but by managing to sell it cheaper than the Ferrari it is a small early victory for the Brits.

The problem for the MP4-12C is that Ferrari’s latest car, the 458 Italia, is just so damn good. With a buzzScore of 9.6, it’s the joint highest rated car on sale. We can’t wait for the first group tests to come out. Ferrari’s PR department have publicly announced that they will provide the car magazines with 458s to test the MP4-12C against, so they’re clearly very confident.

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