McLaren MP4 12C GT3
The interesting, advanced and extremely fast Mc Laren MP4 12C road car was introduced in late 2009 in front of a very curious audience. Since the name McLaren symbolizes the highest levels of motorsports and extreme road cars such as McLaren F1, everybody was eager to find out will the company release their new model as a track-only version. In 2011 the wait was over because McLaren announced that for 2012 season it will be producing a MP4 12C GT3 race car. This was their first race car since 1997 when the Mc Laren F1 GTR was discontinued.
The specification of the new racer were impressive with very advanced construction and materials. The car was totally made of carbon fiber with carbon fiber panels over carbon fiber monocoque on which a front and rear aluminium subframes were attached. The front and rear suspension was double wishbones with coil over multimatic DSSV dampers. Behind the driver is the same engine form the road car (3,8 liters M838T powerplant) but detuned from 600 to 500 bhp and mated to a new, lighter six-speed sequential shift gearbox. The result is a better performing and more dynamic car which is 200 kg lighter than the road going version. Of course, there is an advanced aerodynamic package with spoilers and improved downforce.
In its first year Mc Laren MP4 12C GT3 was produced in 20 examples with a price of over 500.000$ which is very high but understandable for racing machine of this caliber. In 2012 this car was bought by 13 race teams which won 19 races and additional 19 podium finishes and participated in 98 events in Europe. For 2013 season, the aerodynamic package was improved, ECU was revised and car was campaigned in the rest of the world including USA and Asia. In 2014, MP4 12C GT3 continued to achieve high results in championships around the world including Blancpain series.
In 2014, Mc Laren announced an improvement to its racing operation introducing a McLaren 650S GT3 race car. The 650S is a new model based on a MP4 12C (design, mechanics and drivetrain). Interestingly, the new racer will be available as a completely new car or as an upgrade for the existing 12C GT3 race car. That will give existing 12C GT3 owners a chance to race their cars throughout the 2015 season. However, McLaren announced that the new 650S GT3 is also going to be developed to the LM GTE class regulations which will make 650S GT3 eligible for participating in 2015/2016 24 Hours of Le Mans.