Drove a 12c Mclaren yesterday !

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Feb 15, 2003
Jupiter, Florida

So a friend recently purchased a used 12c and kindly offered to let me drive it.

First impressions, it's easy to get into, the seat is amazingly comfortable and this car could easily be a daily driver. The door has no external handle and there is a secret handshake required to open the latch.

The engine is quiet, smooth and refined. Not unlike a more powerful Acura NSX. The transmission is a 7 speed, dual clutch automatic and it works very well, in any of it's various modes. With accurate, rapid shifts that are not harsh in normal mode and absolutely instant in performance mode.

The drive down the uncontrolled airport perimeter road (a long, fast, sweeping corner road) was absolutely uneventful. The car, in performance mode, does not lean at all, although in this mode, it is stiff. In normal mode, it's much like any other performance car. The suspension is active and prevents body roll. Impressive, and unobtrusive. The brakes are carbon and feel just a bit different at first.

But, ooohhhh, that engine. Once we got on the highway, I got on it fully. (not admitting to anything) and the hand of God pushed me forward, and never let up. It has that never ending acceleration feeling of a fast jet. Interestingly, after finally settling down at highway speed, the transmission shifts into a tall 7th gear and RPM's drop well below 2000. (8500 redline) So, it cruises effortlessly down the highway. And, it's quiet inside.

2.8 seconds 0-60, 10.27 1/4 mile @ 135MPH, clearly this thing has power. It's as fast as a literbike!
I'm not sure what he paid for the car. I think they are well under 200K, used.

I've driven the F1 McLaren and Ferrari Enzo. The F1 was a frantic car, with brutal acceleration. Completely unrefined, spinning tires any time the throttle is used without care. Same went for the brakes, without anti lock, caution was required. The center seating position was a royal pain to get into.

The Enzo was more refined in some ways, but awfully loud inside, with a terribly harsh ride over sharp bumps. And, believe it or not, the engine was less responsive when compared to the F1. The Enzo did not feel as fast, and in the real world of street driving, the Enzo's slightly slower response was evident when paired up side by side with the F1.

The 12c is superior to either.
Man-O-Man, driving super cars, flying your plane across the state to buy used lawnmowers....you living the life !
Originally Posted By: FastGame
Man-O-Man, driving super cars, flying your plane across the state to buy used lawnmowers....you living the life !

That part is really true! I do have an absolutely wonderful life. I have little to complain about.

But it's not the exotic cars that make life good. Cars are cars. (Airplanes are a different story) It's really the good people, family and friends that make my life great.
You have some nice friends.
This sounds like a really well though out car, not just a one dimensional fast car that would only be at home on a top speed run or on a track day.
A supercar that one could daily drive?
What a concept!
Good for McLaren and good on you for having gotten to sample it.
Absolutely great!

Quick Q:

How are those doors in tight quarters?

Like parking next to someone?
Originally Posted By: 123Saab

How are those doors in tight quarters?

Like parking next to someone?

I can't picture this car parked next to anything.
If I owned it, I would park far away from any possibility of getting door dings.
Envision: Parked next to a rusty old Impala in a Walmart lot.
It just doesn't compute, does it?
Originally Posted By: Tuffy1760
amazing car... need pics of the wife...

Isn't the McLaren available with a super-model as an option?
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