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    Test Drove the MP4-12C

    I test drove the MP4-12C.  Mostly out of curiosity.  I must say I was very impressed.  I went to the dealership in GT3RS 4.0 and was able to drive the same roads in both cars back to back.  

    First they are completely different cars.  What Mclaren have achieved from a technological perspective is amazing.  To think this is effectively a start up car company and they produce this marvel.  The concept of driving in comfort (normal) mode and switching to track mode in a car is phenomenal.  It is really uncanny how comfortable the normal mode is.  It is like being in a 7 series BMW or S Class.  it eats up the bumps (which in the northeast of the US is a lot).  Switch it to sport or track and the car just flies.  It has phenomenal precision and capacity.  

    Plus the ergonomics of the car are perfect.  (I was swimming in the seats in fast corners but I think there is a sportier version to be had).  It is truly a beautiful car.

    How would I compare it.  Driving the same roads in the GT3RS.  the GT3RS is easily as precise, if not more so.  Both cars handle phenominally well.  The GT3RS will jump around on you more than the Mclaren but I have never been in a car that turns in faster than the GT3RS.  I also like the brakes on the GT3RS better.  The Mclaren pulls from a lower RPM which surprised me.  The GT3RS hits its power curve at 4200 rpm (which would not matter on a track but given the roads I was driving I did have to slow down in spots - unfortunately Mclaren could not shut down the roads for the test drive Smiley).  The biggest difference is how easy the Mclaren is to drive.  I cannot profess to be the best driver in the world but I am decent and I really noticed where I missed some of my spots with my car vs. the Mclaren.  it is really hard to miss the spots with the Mclaren.  The enjoy in the 4.0 makes me smile more.  When it gets into the high rpm and the chasis jumps almost like it is shocked the engine has that much power, it is sends a sensation through your whole body.   

    The obvious sentiment is to say, when you get the GT3RS right you feel that much better because you did it.  With the Mclaren, if you missed it you really need to wonder if driving cars is your thing.  At the end of the road, I was smiling ear to ear in both cars.  

    I will keep mine, that is a forgone conclusion and was not part of the exercise.  I do believe GT3RS is the last of the old with Mclaren being the first of the new.  I am sure there are car generations before which evoked the same concept, but I do believe the Mclaren is a whole new breed.  Anyway, the GT3RS will be held in the family for my children to appreciate some day and let them see what cars were like. 

    After the test drive, I drove up country (200 miles) and smiled the whole way.  To conclude, if I were to have a supercar that i were to drive everyday, I think the Mclaren would be it.  For me, I live in the city and my car is only a toy that I drive whenever I can and the track as much as possible.  I love my car and would not trade it for anything.  It is a different animal than the Mclaren but an animal I like very much.  

    But I am very impressed with the Mclaren.  More than I expected.  If given a blind test to choose a 458 or Mclaren it would have been the 458.  I have driven a 458 before (but to be fair it was a limited drive with the owner in the car and I never got to open it up on windy roads) and I loved it.  But the Mclaren's usability impressed me and the looks are growing on me (especially the spider).  Well done Mclaren and for those of you that own one - do enjoy 


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Many people prefer the 458 Italia over the McLaren, especially on the track but while I've driven the 458 on a couple of occasions (and I loved it), I didn't have the chance yet to drive the McLaren.

    Thanks for sharing your views on the MP4-12C, highly interesting read. kiss


    --

    RC (Germany) - Rennteam Editor Porsche Panamera Turbo S, BMW X5M, Mercedes C63 AMG Coupe PP/DP, Mini Cooper S Countryman All4


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Thanks RC - I woud love to have both on the track.  I would love to put in long day of laps and compare it with the GT3RS


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Thanks for sharing! wink Very interesting to read. I need to go for a test drive too indecision


    --

    Porsche 997 Carrera S in Carrara White with black leather interior. PASM-Sport Suspension (-20 mm), PSE.

    Audi S5 cabrio in Ibis White with black leather interior.


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    bhnyc:

    I will keep mine, that is a forgone conclusion and was not part of the exercise.  I do believe GT3RS is the last of the old with Mclaren being the first of the new.  I am sure there are car generations before which evoked the same concept, but I do believe the Mclaren is a whole new breed.  Anyway, the GT3RS will be held in the family for my children to appreciate some day and let them see what cars were like. 


    Thanks for your insightful comments. Your above paragraph sums it up very nicely and I believe that, what you refer to as a new breed, the McLaren is one of a few cars to answer the question of future automotive technology in a proficient way. McLaren´s challenge to start from scratch might have been one of their strong points actually since they were not forced to build upon existing chassis, drivetrain or suspension technology. 


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Very interesting review, thanks... I look forward to the forthcoming cars at McLaren, they can only get -even- better.


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Ferdie:
    McLaren´s challenge to start from scratch might have been one of their strong points actually since they were not forced to build upon existing chassis, drivetrain or suspension technology. 

     

    Well, I am not sure...

    Steering: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Brakes: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Suspension: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined
     
    The McLaren's electronics (gear-box, variable suspension) constantly change the characteristics of the car - even in difficult situations, like fast bends. Thus, the McLaren does not quite give you a reliable feed-back.
     
    It is comfortable, though. And PDK is also nice. And I like the design Smiley

    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    MKSGR:
    It is comfortable, though. And PDK is also nice. And I like the design Smiley
     


    Ordered one? Smiley


    --

    The secret of life is to admire without desiring.


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Rossi:
    MKSGR:
    It is comfortable, though. And PDK is also nice. And I like the design Smiley
     


    Ordered one? Smiley

    A little hint: please focus on the other points in my post Smiley


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    MKSGR:
    Rossi:
    MKSGR:
    It is comfortable, though. And PDK is also nice. And I like the design Smiley
     


    Ordered one? Smiley

    A little hint: please focus on the other points in my post Smiley


    Smiley Smiley


    --

    The secret of life is to admire without desiring.


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    MKSGR:
    Ferdie:
    McLaren´s challenge to start from scratch might have been one of their strong points actually since they were not forced to build upon existing chassis, drivetrain or suspension technology. 

     

    Well, I am not sure...

    Steering: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Brakes: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Suspension: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined
     
    The McLaren's electronics (gear-box, variable suspension) constantly change the characteristics of the car - even in difficult situations, like fast bends. Thus, the McLaren does not quite give you a reliable feed-back.
     
    It is comfortable, though. And PDK is also nice. And I like the design Smiley

    I don't want to act like a McLaren expert after one drive.  But I have to stay their steering is very 'refined' but not the same feedback as a Porsche GT car, same with suspension.  The Mclaren is planted like no car i have driven before.  It is a funny thing, I always felt suspension could be rated as your willingness to drive a car fast into a bend (i.e. the faster the better the suspension).  The Mclaren makes me rethink that.  I think I (or anyone for that matter) could drive the Mclaren faster into a bend than they ever imagined.  But after driving my car subsequent to the Mclaren, I am not sure my rating system works (or at least I should say that the two don't equal fun anymore).  Who knows? I have to say, when I am in my car and it is sticking to a corner but I can feel the weight slightly shifting, I get giddy with excitement and adrenaline rushes.  


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Oh yeah - I have not driven a 991 so I cannot compare that. 


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    MKSGR:
    Ferdie:
    McLaren´s challenge to start from scratch might have been one of their strong points actually since they were not forced to build upon existing chassis, drivetrain or suspension technology. 

     

    Well, I am not sure...

    Steering: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Brakes: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Suspension: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined
     
    The McLaren's electronics (gear-box, variable suspension) constantly change the characteristics of the car - even in difficult situations, like fast bends. Thus, the McLaren does not quite give you a reliable feed-back.


    You are certainly correct but even if the GT models from Porsche are very comfortable nowadays, they are basically different cars, aren´t they?


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Ferdie:
    MKSGR:
    Ferdie:
    McLaren´s challenge to start from scratch might have been one of their strong points actually since they were not forced to build upon existing chassis, drivetrain or suspension technology. 

     

    Well, I am not sure...

    Steering: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Brakes: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined

    Suspension: Porsche GT models are more precise, more direct, just more refined
     
    The McLaren's electronics (gear-box, variable suspension) constantly change the characteristics of the car - even in difficult situations, like fast bends. Thus, the McLaren does not quite give you a reliable feed-back.


    You are certainly correct but even if the GT models from Porsche are very comfortable nowadays, they are basically different cars, aren´t they?

    Somehow yes. But then: driving a GT2RS and a McLaren it does not quite feel that the McLaren is more suitable for "real-world use"...

    The Porsche's are very convenient to use (space, easy entry, media equipment etc.). They blend well with the environment. They are very nice to drive. Somehow, they are still ideal for today's needs Smiley


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    thanks for sharing yr impressions - I've compared it only to a friends 458 and yr statement is in line with my feel and the comments of Chris Harris saying : digital vs analog...... I like analog on a fun car very much ! wink (as on watches indecision)


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    BjoernB:

    thanks for sharing yr impressions - I've compared it only to a friends 458 and yr statement is in line with my feel and the comments of Chris Harris saying : digital vs analog...... I like analog on a fun car very much ! wink (as on watches indecision)

    "Digital vs. analog" is indeed a perfect summary of the different feel the McLaren and a Porsche GTx have to offer Smiley


    Re: Test Drove the MP4-12C

    Thanks for the comparison . I just love first hand real life reports like that.

    If I would buy a sports car in the upper range outside of Porsche, it would probably be the McLaren.


    --

     997.2 C2S, PDK, -20mm


     
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