McLaren MP4-12C: the rivals
Aston Martin DBS Coupe
0-60 mph: 4.3sec
Max speed: 191mph
Live out your James Bond fantasies with the legendary secret agent's most recent supercar of choice. Carbonfibre body panels save weight, while an uprated V12 engine gives the DBS the pace to keep up with the 007 lifestyle.
Some would argue the DBS is simply a tricked-up DB9, even if Aston says otherwise. You have to look hard to spot the differences, but look even closer and you'll also find it has only two front airbags as standard.
Just when you thought Astons couldn't get any cooler, along comes the DBS to prove that Britannia can still rule the roads. It's marvellously fast, rides and handles better than a DB9, and looks amazing.
Full Aston Martin DBS review
Ferrari 458 Italia
0-60 mph: 3.4sec
Max speed: 202mph
It's fast, but astonishingly flexible, and it grips, turns and stops with awesome ability.
There's plenty of road noise over poor surfaces - and a long waiting list for the car in the first place.
Fast, fantastic to drive and beautifully built, the 458 is an unqualified success.
Full Ferrari 458 Italia review
Lamborghini Gallardo Coupe
0-60 mph: 3.7sec
Max speed: 202mph
Acceleration is astonishing, the sound is something to savour, and the Gallardo handles brilliantly, with immense traction, superb grip and virtually no body lean. It's well equipped, too.
Don't bother with the clunky clutchless manual paddle-shift gearbox. Running costs will be huge, because the car averages just 19.2mpg – and even less if you drive it 'enthusiastically'.
There's no real choice with a Gallardo - you either want it or you don't. Put simply, if you want a 'proper' supercar, they don’t come much more 'proper' than this.
Full Lamborghini Gallardo review
Mercedes-Benz SLS Coupe
0-60 mph: 3.8sec
Max speed: 197mph
This striking supercar has brutal performance and awesome traction. It's also good value alongside other supercars, and the engine makes a glorious noise.
The interior is no more special than those of lesser Mercedes, and those gullwing doors aren't terribly practical.
AMG's first bespoke supercar is a winner. It's fantastic fun, yet easy to use.
Full Mercedes-Benz SLS review