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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone know who makes the engines for Mclaren? I heard that AMG was involved.

Also heard that the engine manufacturer can be changed after the contract expires and therefore, a new style, HP and configuration may result? This is all heresay! Anybody know the facts? Thanks
 

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Ricardo manufacture the engines in Sussex UK . They built a dedicated facility for production. They designed the engine to Mclarens specification although that is disputed by some sources.

There was a video on Youtube of the manufacturing and another of Ron making a visit and joking with the work force to do a good job as he did not want any returns from customers.

Do not believe anybody that Mercedes, Ford, Lesney, Triang, Dinky or Porsche make the engines. Non of those companies had the where with all.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Does Ricardo manufacturer the transmissions also?
 

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Getrag I am given to believe make the dual clutch box for the 458.....
... and the MB SLS-AMG. I believe only difference being the programming (namely shift-times/performance) per-model's requirements (Fiat choosing quicker shift-speeds whereas Daimler choosing longer durability).
 

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That's the first time ive heard that Mark,all the reviewers say different,but what can they say being under the F <acronym title="Google Page Ranking">PR</acronym> control :(
I've noticed reviewers tend to repeat what prior reviewers said whether it's true or not. It seems to be the safe thing to do. Some of the recurring criticisms of the car are so ridiculous that it seems unlikely they're the result of unfettered thinking and more likely they're the confirmation of pre-conceived notions and bias.

For example, the idea that the car is less exciting than the Ferrari is pure nonsense. Just press on the pedal on the right a little harder and then hold on for dear life :) Faster is always more exciting. Yes, you could say "actually, no, Mark, it's the 'feeling' of faster, regardless of whether you're going faster that is more exciting". Guess what: the 'feeling' of faster in the 12C is far from lacking. Other reviewers say "sure at 10/10ths it is an exciting car but it's more sedate at lower speeds". Well the problem there is that the Ferrari only goes 9 of the 12C's 10/10ths. So they're not making fair comparisons.

The 12C is just so solid and precise at lower speeds. Maybe I value that above reviewers because they're jaded, But drive the 458 regularly at city/highway speeds and then drive the 12C regularly at city/highway speeds and tell me which one you gravitate to when you're picking through keys in the morning choosing which to drive. I've driven my 12C Spider to work every day this week instead of my Ferrari 458 Spider.

They're both good but I think the McLaren SSG is better than the Ferrari DCT when you really need it to be. They're both pretty good in auto mode but the Mac shifts way more smoothly when making manual shifts. On the track the Ferrari can get slightly unsettled by throttle (or braking) shift changes whereas they're smooth as silk in the Mac.

Have you seen the Aventador vs. 12C drag race? You can clearly see how much forward momentum the Aventador loses when it lurches up and down on the gear changes. The 458 does a far more subtle version of that whereas the 12C just keeps pushing straight ahead. This is generally the big difference (in many dynamics areas) between the two cars: the Ferrari rolls a little more than the Mac, the Ferrari dives and squats more than the Mac, the Ferrari lurches a bit on changes, the Ferrari gets unsettled over bumps that don't upset the Mac so its exhibits a little bump steer. Every time the Ferrari is going up or down (shift lurches, bumps, dive/squat), or side-to-side (bumps, body roll), it is losing energy that should be channelled to propelling the car forward. I think this mainly down to the chassis, suspension and transmission in the Mac being better quality than those in the Ferrari.

But, again, we're talking degrees here. The Ferrari is still pretty darn fun so I don't want people to think I'm bashing it.
 

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Thanks Mark,what I would suspect,,Mclaren always said we will leave to the owners to find out and spread the word :) As a matter of interest,do you really notice the scuttle shake in the Ferrari,or is that just part of the character that makes it what it is ? :)
 

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Ricardo manufacture the engines in Sussex UK . They built a dedicated facility for production. They designed the engine to Mclarens specification although that is disputed by some sources.
Ricardo did not design the engine, they took over and finished the development of the engine from another well known engine manufacturer, 100% true as you say that they and nobody else make them. The AMG connection is not with this engine, but with the original envisaged engine which was to be a heavily modified Mercedes engine, I was told that one of the Ultima mule cars even ran with one in it although that could just have been just an SLR engine, but why would it have been when the other Ultima mules were running Chevy LS engines.
 

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Its a very loose connection at this point between the former Nissan racing engine (co-developed with Tom Walkinshaw Racing) and McLaren's M838T.

The relevant quote from an early Car&Driver article:

Early in this project, McLaren engineering director Neil Hannemann nominated an engine for the MP4-12C that was originally developed in Nissan’s racing department. Nissan and Infiniti had raced this spinoff from the Infiniti Q45 V-8 at Le Mans (1997 and 1999) and in two Indy Racing League series (1997–2005).
original

Other than a 93-mm (3.66 inches) bore dimension, little of Nissan’s VRH engine exists in today’s M838T V-8.
>8^)
ER
 

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Thanks Mark,what I would suspect,,Mclaren always said we will leave to the owners to find out and spread the word :) As a matter of interest,do you really notice the scuttle shake in the Ferrari,or is that just part of the character that makes it what it is ? :)
I don't really notice scuttle shake specifically but the best way I can illustrate the solidity differences between the two cars is to say that after driving the McLaren a few days in a row it feels like someone loosened all the bolts in the Ferrari. That feeling goes away after a bit but the moment you feel it you instantly get an understanding of the value of torsional rigidity and what it means to the over dynamics of the car. Prior to buying the McLaren I would never have understood that.

One funny thought... I attended a Ferrari driving course they held in Austin, Texas last week on the Circuit of the Americas. Over the duration of that 2-day course you got to do several passenger laps with each of the 10 or so instructors in their 458 Italia prior to following them around the track at speed at the wheel of a 458 Italia. They were all very experienced race drivers who'd won at some of the highest levels. Amazing drivers all of them. But one stood out for me as the smoothest driver by far. There was just no question this guy could make the car feel way smoother around the track than the others. This is a track with a LOT of turns. None of the other guys could overcome the limits of the 458 in the same way he could. Even his shifts were smoother because I suspect he instinctively knew how to ever so slightly breathe off the throttle to make the Ferrari shift without jerking as much as the others did and without losing perceivable amounts of speed. That isn't usually necessary in a Ferrari with DCT but if you don't drive a Lambo that way you get whiplash on each shift :)

These guys were all major race (and many race series champion) winners picked by Ferrari to guide some of their most enthusiastic customers (the 2-day course cost $13,000) around some of the best tracks in the world. They've been driving 458s day in and day out around this track for weeks (I think they do 5 2-say sessions on the Austin F1 track) and around other tracks (they do many courses at Mont Tremblant including very advanced courses) all summer. They all drove the 458 (and F12 in one case) beautifully around the track.

Despite that only one of these world-class racing stars / driving instructors could bring the fabulous 458 to approach anything near the kind of smoothness a normal driver can achieve in the 12C Spider. I don't know if he was losing time to the other drivers because he was compensating for the car or if he was making time up by being smoother. Smoother can often be faster even if it 'feels' slower and the McLaren is always smoother than the 458 and is clearly faster. My guess is that he was faster because the car was less upset. To me it certainly felt faster.

BTW if you own a Ferrari I'd highly recommend Corsa Pilota. It was absolutely awesome and we had a great group of super-enthusiastic people. I hope McLaren operates something like this regularly this at some point. I learned a lot and have even even more respect for the capabilities of my 458. I know it sounds expensive but they put you up for 2 nights at the Four Seasons, take care of all your meals, give you some nice swag, teach you amazing things, have awesome instructors, and have to replace the tires and brakes (CCBs) regularly. It's cheaper than one set of new brakes in your own 458 and you get to do things you might not want to try in your own car :)
 

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Thanks Mark,Mclaren are doing this for European owners,it started in April through MclarenGT,and they now also do a race driver training programme all the way up to GT3 standard at a fraction of the F cost,ie the first 2 day course is £3600,including a full time instructor,accomadation,car fuel tyres ........Its early days,but they will roll this out in the states in the future,but im sure the price will have to be higher because of the start up costs away from Europe,but its all happening :)
 

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Its a very loose connection at this point between the former Nissan racing engine (co-developed with Tom Walkinshaw Racing) and McLaren's M838T.

The relevant quote from an early Car&Driver article:



>8^)
ER
Question, was the 12C meant to have a NA, V10 AMG, but something to do with a fall out with Ron...Ie the TWR unit.?

I had a long chat as in a Full day, with the Guy who designed the engine whilst at TWR, he was the race engineer to Toms Son. On the engine I well recall him saying that at current levels its not even stressed.
 
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