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McLaren Planning Five Year, Five Car Product Rollout

Aiming for a total production volume of 4,500 units, McLaren will introduce one new model (or a version of an existing model) per year for the next five years. McLaren North American chief Tony Joseph laid out the British automaker’s plans at a sit down lunch in Toronto, Canada – the first stop of a 10 city dealer tour in North America and the only one in Canada.

Joseph joined McLaren in early 2009, at which point we were surprise to learn that McLaren already had a prototype vehicle built. In fact, Joseph says the MP4-12C is part of a careful plan to take the racing company into the street car business; a plan that has been culminating for six years.

The connection to racing is extremely important for McLaren, helping it build a strong reputation. Stating that McLaren is “The most successful racing team in history,” Joseph continually came back to two key philosophies for both the brand and the car, namely, “substance over flash,” and “lower volume, higher standards.”

McLaren’s current plan is to sell just 1,000 units of the MP4-12C in its first year of production and so far that number seems easily attainable. Before the dealer network was announced several weeks ago and before the high-profile unveiling in front of one of the world’s wealthiest crowds at Pebble Beach, McLaren had already racked up 2,700 names of interested buyers. While Joseph did caution that “interested” doesn’t necessarily equate to a sale, McLaren would need just over a third of those potential clients to make its sales target. According to Joseph, the majority of those names weren’t Mercedes owners or Ferrari owners, but Porsche owners, a group that Joseph hints is familiar with the “substance over style” approach.
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