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McLaren puts Ferrari on notice with huge discounts

Slashed: The McLaren 12C supercar can now be had for $398,000 - cheaper than a 458, R8 or a Gallardo.

More than $100k cut from the McLaren 12C supercar as maker slams 'overpriced' rivals

9 May 2013

McLAREN Automotive has announced extraordinary price cuts of more than $100,000 for its 12C supercar – and slammed what it calls ‘historic overpricing’ in the Australian market.

Revised positioning sees the 12C now available for $398,000 before on-road costs (previously $493,100), while the 12C Spider cops an even bigger discount, with a new starting price of $441,780 (was $543,900).

In comparison, arch rival Ferrari charges $526,950 for the 458 coupe, and $590,000 for the 458 Spider – roughly $130,000 and $150,000 more than the discounted British contender.

The new price also makes the 12C coupe cheaper than the recently revised Audi R8 V10 Plus ($408,200), and the Lamborghini Gallardo LP550-2 ($409,500).

According to McLaren, the decision to clash the 12C’s pricing aligns the car more closely with “competitive international markets”.

In a forceful attack, the company went on to call the Australian super luxury sportscar segment “historically overpriced”, and said a number of the core manufacturers employed premium-pricing policies – in other words, they were gouging local buyers.

The company said its new pricing gave buyers “absolute transparency” and reflected “the changing expectations of customers in this category in Australia, many of whom have become accustomed to paying significantly less than the advertised (recommended retail price), as competitors in the category heavily discount”.

Furthermore, the company says it will give existing buyers who paid the old price a special “trade-in allowance”. However, this will only be available towards a new model within McLaren’s range, meaning buyers who look beyond the company next time won’t receive the benefit.

According to new-car sales database VFACTS, McLaren has sold 30 12C-badged cars since the supercar’s launch in 2012.

The British company has also reached agreement with its dealer – Trivetts in both Sydney and Melbourne – to cut the price of all in-stock vehicles.

McLaren Asia-Pacific regional director Ian Gorsuch called the news “exciting progress for McLaren, our dealer partner Trivett and for our Australian customers”.

“Since launching in Australia 12 months ago, the McLaren 12C and 12C Spider have changed the Australian motoring landscape,” he said.

“Now, with revised pricing, our Australian customers will enjoy even greater access to McLaren’s renowned market leading technology, quality, high-performance and innovation.”

Group general manager for Trivett Bespoke, Matthew Tunstall, called the move “a positive step for McLaren in Australia” and said the dealer group expected “even stronger demand from our customers for the 12C and 12C Spider”.

A 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 engine producing 441kW of power at 7000rpm, and 600Nm of torque between 3000 and 7000rpm powers the 12C. This is enough to propel the 1336kg (dry weight) carbon-fibre supercar from 0-100km/h in 3.3 seconds on the way to a 330km/h top speed.

The engine drives the rear wheels through two wet clutches and a McLaren-developed seven-speed “Seamless Shift” dual-clutch transmission.

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