At the time of writing, the McLaren MP4-12C is an unknown quantity. Regardless of how well it does, it is a landmark. The main load-bearing structure, what McLaren calls a “Monocell” is carbon fiber, using a system similar to injection moulded plastic. This has been the automotive equivalent of the Holy Grail, and has been kicking around motor racing for at least 30 years.
Conventional carbon fiber requires laying sheets by hand in moulds. This is fine for small runs, but is expensive because it is labor-intensive. McLaren can make a Monocell in four hours.
Become a Member & Get Ad-Free Access To This Article (& About 6,000+ More)
Access to the full article is limited to paid subscribers only. Our membership removes most ads, lets you enjoy unlimited access to all our premium content, and offers you awesome discounts on partner products. Enjoy our premium content.