McLaren MP4-12C: the story so far - Dennis reveals McLaren ambitions Dec 09

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McLaren MP4-12C
McLaren Automotive boss Ron Dennis has given more details of his plans to emulate the success of Ferrari's road car division.

The McLaren MP4-12C supercar will go on sale in 2011 and will go up against rivals such as the Ferrari 458.

McLaren's decision to create the supercar is one of the main reasons behind the company's split from its former F1 partner, Mercedes-Benz, which was finalised this week.

McLaren and Mercedes also co-developed the SLR supercar together.

Amicable split with Mercedes-Benz
Dennis insists that the parting has led to no hard feelings, despite the fact that Mercedes has already unveiled the SLS supercar.

Dennis said: '[Regarding] our ability to produce a car to a quality, to a price and to a performance level – the vast majority of that has come through the things we've learned while working with Mercedes-Benz and producing the SLR.

'One of the best things that ever happened to our company was to gain that experience from Mercedes-Benz.'

Big plans for McLaren
McLaren is planning to build up to 5000 cars a year, with the MP4-12C being the first of what will ultimately be a multi-car model range that will help to secure McLaren's future.

'In 1966 I stood in the pitlane at my first Grand Prix, Mexico City, and the only two brands that were in the series then that are still competing today are McLaren and Ferrari,' he said.

'Car manufacturers who do not have Formula One as a core part of their business inevitably move in and move out of the sport – according to the pressures and commercial realities they have on them.'

McLaren MP4-12C: the story so far - McLaren MP4-12C test video April 2009

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