mclaren_mp4-12cMcLaren , the Formula 1 Championship racing team that also makes civilian supercars, took the wraps off their latest – the MP4-12C. Via Jalopnik:

Until today it’s been known as the P11. Now, we’ve got the first official photographs of what we told you earlier is now called the McLaren MP4-12C — the first bespoke McLaren road car since the F1.

but what we all really want to know is what makes the get-up-and-go:

It’s a 3.8-litre 90-degree V8 mounted amidships and producing ‘around 600bhp and 443lb ft’. ‘It delivers the highest horsepower to CO2 ratio of any car on the market today with an internal combustion engines – and that includes petrol and diesel hybrids,’ boasts Antony Sheriff, MD of McLaren Automotive. Expect a CO2 output somewhere just south of 300g/km.

Contrary to earlier speculation, this is McLaren’s own V8, dubbed M838T and breathed on by twin turbos and driving the rear wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox (no manual is available). The V8 has a dry sump and a flat-plane crank like a race engine, to lower the centre of gravity and allow a higher rev limit of 8500rpm.

Every single component of the MP4-12C is unique, vows McLaren. Not a single switch or part is pilfered from a rival’s parts bin.

Drool! I cannot wait till Jeremy Clarkson waxes poetic on BBC’s Top Gear while thrashing one of these about. Check out the full photo gallery on Jalopnik. Hehe, switchblade doors reminescient of the Lamborghini Countach of my teenage daydreams.

paddle shifters and very spartan dashboard. I like the layout of the controls but I want to see it in action, lit up. Hopefully there is a HUD display for the windscreen: