McLaren is using F1-style development techniques on the MP4-12C during an extensive testing regime that's taken the car from Germany’s Nurburgring to the Arctic Circle.
Details have emerged of the development programme, which is at its halfway point and is being orchestrated by the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking.
The 2009 testing programme has involved heavy mileage at the Nurburgring and Dunsfold Aerodrome. The car has also been cold-weather testing in the Arctic and tested for heat durability in Bahrain.
All the information is fed back to the MTC, where simulation and rapid engineering processes – core aspects of the Formula 1 team testing – are employed to recalibrate the test cars within hours.
“I am really proud of what the team has achieved this year,” said Dick Glover, technical director at McLaren Automotive, who is responsible for the 50-strong testing and development team and the eight development cars that have featured in the 2009 programme.
“Having to develop a brand new range of cars from scratch to the standards expected of McLaren, featuring groundbreaking new structures and powertrain, is the ultimate challenge and one we are relishing.”
Chris Goodwin, chief test driver at McLaren Automotive, said lessons gleaned from both the racing team and the iconic F1 road car are being used on the new MP4-12C.
“We are the most successful ever motor racing team, we designed and built one of the world’s most iconic sports cars in the McLaren F1, and pioneered carbonfibre development on race and road cars,” he added.
“We took those standards into the development programme for the MP4-12C in order to launch a new high-performance sports car comparable with past achievements and offering new levels of performance for the future.”