McLaren MP4-12C with its precursors – Click above for high-res image gallery
Introducing a new vehicle every year is perfectly normal for a Formula 1 team like McLaren, which brings a new grand prix racer to the grid for every championship. Less so for an automaker that offers only one model range, but according to reports, McLaren Automotive plans to bring a new product to market each year moving forward.
Following up on past offerings like the legendary McLaren F1 and the SLR jointly developed with Mercedes-Benz, the new MP4-12C is the first offering from the new McLaren Automotive. But it won't be the last. It's already introduced a GT3 racing variant of the MP4, and is reportedly in the process of developing a roadster variant, as well. Beyond that, reports have linked McLaren with a 911-fighter to slot in below the MP4, and a stratospheric hyper-car to slot in above. With three core ranges in store, that could give McLaren enough space to launch variants of each for years to come.
While the key to its meeting ever-restricting environmental regulations rests in its lightweight construction, the British racing-team-turned-automaker is also said to be working on bringing battery-assisted propulsion – similar, we'd suspect, to the KERS regenerative braking system found in its latest Formula 1 racers – to the street, reportedly already managing to extract a single horsepower out of a lithium-ion fuel cell no larger than a AA battery.