Tub Thumping! McLaren May Build Carbon Structures for Other Automakers ""
Posted on: July 10, 2017

McLaren tubThe press conferences that automakers call to report their financial results are never as exciting as the product launches where they let us whale on their spiffy new cars, and that’s doubly true for McLaren. Nevertheless, they often contain fascinating details. So it proved at McLaren’s numbers presser, conducted during the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Much was as we’d expected to hear: the company is doing well, sales increased by nearly 100 percent after the launch of the Sports Series last year, the U.S. remains the largest single market, buying 1139 cars, the company remains on track to build 5000 cars a year by the end of the decade…

But then the company’s Chief Financial Officer Paul Buddin dropped in a fascinating detail: The new plant in Sheffield, England, that will build McLaren’s next-generation carbon-fiber tubs will boast an annual capacity of 10,000 monocoque chassis (like that for the all-new 720S seen above) when it comes on stream at the end of 2019.

Keen to understand the difference between those two numbers, we cornered McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt after the conference. He said that much of the gap between a sales target of 5000 and production capacity of 10,000 is headroom to allow for any future sales expansion. “It would be very short-sighted to limit ourselves to 5000 cars,” he said. But then he all but admitted that McLaren aims to build carbon structures for other automakers.


Clickbank Affiliate Tools

McLaren F1 News Blog

Given McLaren’s long experience with carbon-bodied road cars, from the original F1 (above) onward, this makes a lot of sense. Flewitt suggested the company could become a supplier to other automakers looking for limited-run performance cars, either with carbon structures or even more extensive engineering projects.

“We won’t do it until we’re fully up and running ourselves,” he said, “but it is something that we are considering as an obvious expansion.”

We’ve already told you that McLaren’s next-generation architecture will be far more adaptable than the current one, potentially even scaling up enough to make a 2+2 model. The flexibility means the same core technology could be used to produce very different models from McLaren’s range. As more manufacturers move to lightweight technology, McLaren’s expertise could become a sizeable additional revenue stream for the company.

“”

""

Share This:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

Comments Protected by WP-SpamShield Spam Filter