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McLaren MP4-12C

The (Italian) giant killer, Britain is due to launch its own brand of supercar

Move over Italians as there is a British supercar ready to take control of the market, or so McLaren envisage it. Dubbed ‘an F1 car for the road’ by the likes of Ron Dennis and the good folks at McLaren the £150,000 gulwinged supercar is due for sale in 2011.

The McLaren MP4-12C has styling which is dramatic and yet smooth, a slave to the whims of aerodynamics so as to reach the top speed of 200mph yet visually very attractive.

Once inside the cockpit of the McLaren MP4-12C the F1 theme is not discontinued with seven speed F1-style paddle-shift with intuitive gears. Known as 'pre-cog' for pre-cognition at McLaren the 'seamless-shift gearbox' system pre-selects the gear before you shift to it, something that Lewis Hamilton would be more comfortable with than your average driver.

Sounding disturbingly similar to a soviet submachine gun, the McLaren MP4-12C will have equally as much bang. With a 0-60mph in 3.4 seconds, the two seater will have the thrust to match that of the Ferrari 458 Italia, and follow in the tyre tracks of the McLaren F1 supercar, launched in 1991, which held the title of the world’s fastest road car.

The model itself actually shares the same naming convention used by the team’s F1 cars. It falls between McLaren’s 1997 MP4-12 (which won three Grands Prix) and the 1998 MP4-13 (which won both world championship titles), emphasizing the F1 on the road image.

For McLaren however, the McLaren MP4-12C is just the beginning. ‘The company has outlined a strategy to create a global supercar brand with a stable of high-performance models. In an interview with The Sunday Times this weekend, Dennis revealed plans to build three new models over the next six years, eventually churning out 4,000 cars a year (Ferrari makes about 6,000). “We’re building more than one car; we’re building a brand,”

McLaren Automotive chairman Ron Dennis said: 'It is a long-held dream of mine to launch a range of high performance sports cars that set new standards in the industry. I am confident that now is the right time for McLaren Automotive to become a full-line high performance sports car manufacturer.'

One of the most anticipated supercars of the decade the McLaren MP4-12C will be starting production in its Surrey plant soon to have the first models released in 2011, put aside a few grand a month in savings and one could be yours!

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