McLaren MP4-12C 

  • $229k built in United Kingdom
  • 2011
  • 591 HP 3.8L
  • 205 mph
The powertrain is remarkable in its strength and ease-of-use: the MP4 is noticeably quicker than a 458, doesn’t feel that turbocharged and makes a great noise.
by EVO
As with most twin-turbo, small-displacement V-8s, power delivery is a little flat off-boost, but you can easily drive around it.

Road Tests Real world tests of the McLaren MP4-12C


3.1 s
4.7 s

Top speed

205 mph
430 Scuderia
190 mph
191 mph


5.9 s
8.6 s
8.4 s

Top Gear track time


1/4 mile

11 s
12.3 s
12.3 s

Nurburgring time

McLaren P1

Data points Key details of the McLaren MP4-12C


McLaren P1


591 HP
McLaren P1
903 HP
453 HP

Photo Gallery Wallpaper quality closeups of the car

What People Are Saying Give it to me straight


McLaren’s math says that the MP4’s broad torque curve and 5.4 pounds per horsepower will trounce Ferrari’s 458 Italia on the run to 60 mph (in three seconds flat) and through the quarter-mile (less than 11 seconds).
by Car and Driver (Feb, 2011)
It verges close enough to perfect that Ferrari will feel the heat of a serious competitor while other supercar makers will struggle to match this combination of value, performance, and technological intrigue.
by Car and Driver (Feb, 2011)
On upshifts especially, we were pre-cogging at around 7,000 revs, which sets up the next gear, and then taking the shift at 7,500 revs.
by AutoBlog (Feb, 2011)


This was accomplished entirely through software tuning; the car's seven-speed, dual-clutch SSG transaxle remains unchanged, though it also benefits from the software update.
But now McLaren wants to take the fight to the street with the all-new MP4-12C, a carbon-fiber-intensive, mid-engine supercar powered by a twin-turbo V-8 that makes 592 horsepower.
by MotorTrend (Apr, 2011)
The Spider also weighs just 88 pounds more than the coupe, mainly due to its retractable roof panels (constructed from the same lightweight composite as the body) and a new exhaust system.


The wheel-mounted paddle shifters require a firm tug that increases the involvement level, and the steering weight is near perfect, with very good accuracy.
by MotorTrend
Its hydraulic suspension so inhibits body roll that it handles tight jinks with a go-kart’s agility.
by Car and Driver (Feb, 2011)
There are two chief clusters: "H" means Handling and it sets the suspension, steering and ESC between normal, sport and track; "P" means powertrain and has the same modes for throttle-engine mapping, gearshifts, as well as management of the intake plenum tone inside the cabin.
by AutoBlog (Feb, 2011)


Mercedes, which owns 40 percent of McLaren Group (including McLaren Racing, the F1 team, McLaren Electronic Systems, McLaren Applied Technologies, and McLaren Automotive) offered an engine for the car, but the MP4-12C is powered by a bespoke 3.8-liter twin-turbo V-8 with quad cams and four valves per cylinder, a dry sump, and a flat-plane crankshaft.
by MotorTrend (Sep, 2009)
Supercars are blindingly fast, by definition, and drivers of the new McLaren, with its 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 (code-named M838T) won't have any difficulty remembering what league they're playing in.
by AutomobileMag (Dec, 2012)
Downshifts are just as fantastic, with revmatching blips and substantial engine braking.


When you see the MP4-12C in all its carbon-fiber, composite glory, it looks even nicer than it does in photographs.
by (May, 2014)
As with any of these big moments, Stephenson and his team have heard every single "From that angle it looks like a..
by AutoBlog (Feb, 2011)
The MP4-12C's handsome exterior is the work of another American, designer Frank Stephenson, whose credits include the new Mini, the Fiat 500, as well as a stint as Ferrari's design chief.
by MotorTrend (Sep, 2009)

Specifications Full list of technical specs


Brand McLaren
Price $229,000
Type of car Production car
Year 2011
City mileage 11 MPG
Highway mileage 22 MPG


Body style Coupe
Top type Hard fixed

power & handling

Power-to-weight ratio 5.35 lb/hp
Maximum hp 591 HP @ 7,000 RPM
Maximum torque 442 ft-lb @ 3,000 RPM
Max RPM 8,500 RPM
Engine placement Mid
Curb-to-curb turning radius 40.4 feet
Steering system Rack and pinion

suspension, wheels & brakes

Front suspension Double wishbone, Independent
Rear suspension Double wishbone, Unknown
Front brakes 14.6 in Ventilated Disc
Rear brakes 13.8 in Ventilated Disc
Front tires Pirelli P Zero
Front wheels 235/35 19
Wheel material Aluminum alloy
Rear tires Pirelli P Zero
Rear wheels 305/30 20
Wheel material Aluminum alloy

physical dimensions

Curb weight 3,161 lb
Width 75.2 in
Height 47.2 in
Length 177.4 in
Front track width 65.2 in
Wheelbase 105.1 in

road tests

Top speed 205 mph
1/4 mile 11 s
0-60mph 3.1 s
0-100mph 5.9 s
0-200kph 8.7 s
Distance 100 ft
Top gear time 1:16.20
20.6km nurburgring time 7:28.0
Laguna seca lap time 1:34.50
Hockenheim short lap time 1:08.70
Drag coefficient 0.36


Transmission make McLaren SSG
Drivetrain 2WD
Shift system Automatic
Gearing Traditional
# of gears 7 gears


Engine make McLaren M838T
Displacement 3,799 cc
Cylinders V8
Air compressor Twin turbocharger
Fuels Gas
Compression ratio 8.7:1
Bore/stroke 3.66 in / 2.75 in
Block material Aluminum alloy
Cylinder head material Aluminum alloy
Valvetrain Dual overhead camshaft (DOHC)
VVT system McLaren dual VVT
Valves per cylinder 4 valves
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