Thanks for posting Nick. Interesting, nice to see the 12C as the benchmark, even in a wacky and somewhat useless comparo. Also, I've never before seen an H-pattern gearshift mounted between the driver and the door (only just seen sequential-shift gearshifts mounted there). That was kind of interesting.
Macca only seems to get backhand complements in these things. They have 12Cs available like the wallflower eager to get asked to a dance. But here, the backhanded complement, although nice, really is lost in the hand wringing of how much the reviewer would like to say the kit car is better. Except for one thing. It's not.
He says that the Mac is the best of the production cars. It would actually be nice to hear that as praise and not some begrudging favor he's doing for McLaren.
The Mac is more amazing because unlike the 458 and other cars that are only made available rarely so people get giddy about it, it kicks ass day and night, with all comers. People don't realize how special that is, because they take it for granted.
So instead, we get a video heaping praise on kit car for performing worse.
Well, I've never driven that kit car, but I have owned and raced an original Lola T165 Can Am (Gary Wilson car in original series) for which i did get a street plate. Yes, for one day, it had headlights, turn signals, a horn, a windshield wiper motor, and front and rear bumpers. And, I'd take it to pick up fried chicken on Sunday afternoons.
That car had a 406 cubic inch aluminum chevy, dyno'd at 625 hp, so very similar the the Mac. But, it weighed 1700 lbs, had 17" rear slicks, and enormous rear wing, and a rock solid Hewland LG600 gear box.
You really cannot compare the 2 cars. The McLaren is smooth, fast sophisticated, comfortable, and safe. The acceleration to 60 might be similar, but over that, the Lola was a monster. And, the Hewland was shifted without the clutch, so acceleration was continuous. And violent.
The Lola surrounds you with 70 gallons of gas in twin fuel cells (actually the aluminum tub with foam blocks in it), and places your feet directly behind the unprotected front radiator. So, if you hit something hard, you can burn to death, or escape with just your feet par boiled.
But, it has no parallel for sheer excitement. It would pull 70 mph in first gear, and every gear after that felt like first all over again. On the other hand, when George Follmer passed me on the front straight at Road America going about 30 mph faster than me, I knew if I kept it up, I'd get killed. I was doing about 170, and at that speed, getting passed like that is really a trip.
So, I'd advise all my fellow owners to drive a Can Am Lola, so you can compare the two. But, revel in how fast and usable the Mac is. Oh, one problem is that nobody will let you drive theirs, so (like me), if you want to try one, you'll probably have to buy it first.
The greatest similarity is that on track, they both average 3 MPG. But the Mac averages 24 mpg on the way to the track.
Side note: I took my beautiful wife for a ride in the Lola one Sunday morning. We made it about 100 yards before she began screaming "Take me home!!"
Side note number 2: The most common question I was asked in traffic was, "is that a VW kit car?" Nobody asks that about the 12C.