McLaren Automotive today announced the city locations for its global retail network. Operating independently, but located at the heart of the McLaren Group, the company expects to confirm the names of the majority of its partners in these cities within weeks, with the remainder making up the launch network of 35 retailers confirmed through the autumn.
An initial eight retailers in North America (USA, Canada), 12 in Europe (UK, Germany, Belgium, France, Italy, Switzerland), two in the Middle-East, and McLaren’s South African representative are expected to be the first confirmed retailers in the company’s network, which begins selling the McLaren MP4-12C from spring 2011. A further 12 retailers will be announced through 2010, completing the initial line-up, including McLaren’s Spanish retailer, two further retailers in the USA, five more in the Middle East, and the company’s network of four retailers in its Asia-Pacific region.
McLaren Automotive can confirm that it will be represented by many of the world’s best automotive retailers in the following cities and markets:
Antony Sheriff, McLaren Automotive’s Managing Director, said: “This is a landmark day for McLaren Automotive as we confirm the locations of the first of our partners that will represent us around the world. It has been incredibly encouraging to experience the demand to sell McLarens from the world’s best car retailers – in every country in which we planned to launch and at the heart of all performance car markets.
“We have proposed sensible, but high quality, expectations from our preferred retail partners and have been amazed at some of the proposals presented by potential retailers: nearly half are building brand new flagship showrooms.
“There is clearly an appreciation of McLaren all around the world. Aside from the obvious Formula 1 links, we believe this is down to our strong business plan, our exciting and innovative product line-up, and a focus on what is best for the retailer – sensible investment, and attention to customer service and aftersales, both in how we treat the customer and how we design the car. We will offer the retailers a unique focus on the customer, supporting them far more than is typical after a sale has been completed. We have a phrase at McLaren that sums up our attitude and appeals to the retail business: sanity, not vanity.”
“We will also develop a global network that has fewer retailers than our competitors, selling a smaller volume of higher quality cars with more useable technology and performance; almost the perfect scenario for experienced retailers of premium high-performance sports car,” Sheriff concluded.
High demand to represent McLaren; high demand to buy a McLaren
A unique combination of a premium sports car ‘designed around the driver’, focus on the customer, and McLaren’s unrivalled motor racing heritage in Formula 1, Le Mans, Can-Am, and Indy Cars, has attracted many of the world’s best car retailers to take up the opportunity of representing McLaren at the birth of its global car company.
Over 600 automotive businesses have been considered to be McLaren Automotive retailers; McLaren pre-selected 100 preferred partners to review, with a further 500 making direct approaches to McLaren following the announcement of the company’s business plans in September 2009.
The 12C, the first in the company’s new range of ‘pure’ McLaren high-performance sports cars, goes on sale from spring 2011. Up to 1,000 12Cs will be manufactured and delivered in 2011. Of the 19 countries launching the 12C in 2011, the USA, UK, and Germany will be the company’s biggest markets. Between 300 and 400 cars are planned for North America, 400 to 500 for Europe, and 100 to 200 each for the Middle-East/South Africa and Asia-Pacific regions.
Initial demand for the 12C appears to validate McLaren’s strategy for a high-quality, performance-oriented and highly efficient sports car featuring Formula 1-inspired technology. Over 2,500 ‘prospects’ have registered ‘expressions of interest to purchase’ on www.mclarenautomotive.com .
Once the first retailers are contracted, McLaren will begin to deliver those prospects’ details to the retailers to take orders. With retailers adding their own contacts, demand for the McLaren’s first ‘pure’ high performance sports car is due to be high.
The first 12Cs will be delivered to customers in Europe, followed by a phased distribution to retailers in the Middle-East/South Africa, North America and Asia-Pacific. McLaren Automotive’s long-term strategy is to sell a range of around 4,000 high-performance sports cars per year that will account for between three and four percent of the annual global market for premium sports cars: a conservative target based on the 2003 market for luxury and performance cars.
Further retailers will be added in select mature and emerging markets from 2012 as McLaren moves to full production of its model line-up by the middle of the decade. McLaren Automotive’s aim is for its global network to remain smaller, more flexible, and more profitable than competitors’ networks. McLaren does not anticipate a global network of more than around 70 retailers, ensuring effective communication and logistics, and strong business relationships between McLaren and its retailers that will be of direct benefit to customers.
Formula 1 at heart: in design, build and show
The 12C will make its global public debut, alongside the company’s Formula 1 team, at the world-famous Goodwood Festival of Speed in southern England in July. McLaren Automotive will then present the 12C, and other core assets such as the car’s motor racing-inspired one-piece MonoCell carbon chassis, at a number of public, high-profile events through 2010. All McLaren retailers will also host 12C launch events for VIPs and prospects as part of the car’s 2010 world tour. Aimed at car enthusiasts and potential customers alike, McLaren Automotive anticipates presenting its first McLaren at over 100 events in the second half of 2010.
Mario Micheli, McLaren Automotive’s recently-appointed Commercial and Marketing Director, said: “McLaren is a name that resonates with motorsport fans around the globe: no other racing team can match our achievements and this means for many prospective retailers and customers, it is easy to understand our aspirations for the new sports car range. If you know McLaren, you will know we bring passion, commitment and an absolute ambition to succeed.”
“However, launching a global car company will require engaging with more than just motorsport fans. That is why we are pushing ourselves and the new network to make a huge impact through global events. Whether you know McLaren or not, we believe it is vital that our prospective customers see the 12C, feel its quality, and meet our team behind its development in order to really understand the culture that drives everything at McLaren – to be the best,” Micheli concluded.
Uniquely, the full range of cars will be designed, engineered, developed and built within and alongside the home of the company’s Formula 1 cars at the award-winning McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) global headquarters in Woking, England. A brand-new manufacturing facility, the McLaren Production Centre, began construction adjacent to the MTC on March 1 2010. Within two months, its construction was already two weeks ahead of schedule.
Commitment to customer satisfaction
McLaren Automotive plans to repay the successful retailers’ commitment to bespoke McLaren dealerships with innovative technologies and processes aimed at delivering new levels of customer satisfaction in the sports car market:
Antony Sheriff said: “Our business will succeed or fail on our ability to exceed our customers’ expectations – for technologically advanced cars, great quality and reliability, and excellent relations with their retailers. Our aims are simple: to offer the best cars and service ever seen in this demanding market.”
“Therefore, our challenge has been to find retail partners with the same attitudes as McLaren – an absolute focus on being the best that is inherent in everything we do and a natural result of our successful motor racing heritage,” Sheriff concluded.
To see the McLaren MP4-12C at the Goodwood Festival of Speed click here to book tickets