McLaren 12C officially discontinued: Replaced by 650S
McLaren lifted the curtain on its new 650S last month at the Geneva Motor Show and temporarily shelved the production of 12C to focus on 650S’ production at full capacity. But now, a surprising letter from McLaren Automotive CEO Mike Flewitt showed up at the existing 12C owners’ doorsteps that said “we have decided to cease [production of the 12C] in light of the success of the 650S.”
This marks the end of the super car that revived the brand three years ago. But the 3500 odd proud owners of the 12C are given a free Technology Upgrade program that incorporates some of the 650S’ features. Included are the new Active Aero software that enables 12C’s existing Airbrake to ‘sense’ different driving scenarios and deploy automatically to improve stability, in addition to the usual Airbrake position under heavy braking. Drag Reduction System (DRS) is also added to the package to enhance straight line stability at high speeds.
The Android based entertainment system will be upgraded for better functionality and usability. Later 12C models (with door buttons) will also receive an external control to drop the windows for ease of access in tight spaces.
While the above upgrades are offered for free, there is also a discounted offer on two new features that comes in the 650S; the reversing camera and DAB radio. All mentioned offers are open to all the 12Cs, even those purchased second-hand through McLaren’s Qualified Program or third party dealers.
This gesture should earn the company some goodwill as it did not try to lure the customers into trading in their 12C for the newer model.