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McLaren confirms Sports Series model for Australia

Mini Mac: The only official images of McLaren's sixth production road car show the vehicle in camouflage. The new entry-level model will sit under the existing 650S as a more affordable option.

More 'accessible' model for Aus will uphold McLaren mantra, could double sales

28 Nov 2014

SUPERCAR-builder McLaren has confirmed its as yet unseen entry-level “game-changing” offering will be coming Down Under after its global debut in the second quarter of next year.

Despite the mysterious model being in the final stages of development, no detail has been officially revealed nor has a full look at the new McLaren, but the so-called Sports Series is on its way here.

Speaking at McLaren Automotive's new Melbourne dealership, the company's sales and marketing executive director Jolyon Nash confirmed to GoAuto that while the newest McLaren would sit in a segment under its $441,500 650S bigger brother, it would not be a cash-cow budget version.

“It very much depends on how you approach your volume ambitions with the model,” he said. “If you produce a lower-segment car and then have ambitions to sell many thousands of them then there is a valid concern.”“McLaren's intention is to always remain a highly exclusive super-luxury brand so we think the segment below 650S is a good segment to be in. We think we can offer a game-changing car in that segment that will appeal to a number of customers, but we're not looking to become a mass-volume manufacturer.

That said, with a more accessible price tag and all the features associated with the brand, McLaren is planning to attract fresh customers, and says the new model could potentially double its sales.

“It will offer all of the characteristics of a McLaren in a different segment,” said Mr Nash.

“Its an all-new car not a derivative of our existing model ranges and it is a more accessible McLaren, but it is a pure McLaren.

“Over time, if we double our volumes over what we are doing at the moment we would be happy. We think it has the potential to do that for us.”

Exact timing, pricing and technical details are yet to be released but Mr Nash did confirm the car would have a mid-mounted engine with lightweight carbon-fibre mono-cell construction.

“It will be very much a traditional McLaren,” he said. “We believe in fundamentals like having a carbon-fibre mono-cell, lightweight mid-engined cars – that's really what a McLaren is at the moment so we don't see that we are going to change that philosoph.”

Some have speculated the new McLaren will go head to head with the venerable Porsche 911 in the $200,000 to $300,000 high-performance two-seater segment, but the company has not officially declared any rivals.

McLaren currently offers just two models in Australia, but both convertible and coupe versions of the 12C are in run-out to make way for the newly launched 650S – also in hard and soft-top variants.

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