McLaren to open showroom in Bahrain
Manama, July 9, 2012
McLaren Automotive, one of the world's biggest sports car manufacturers, has announced plans to set up a state-of-the-art showroom in Bahrain.
The facility will be located next to the Bahrain World Trade Centre, which aims to offer customers the latest in design and technology.
"Like all of McLaren's showrooms, this will also stand out as a landmark next to one of Bahrain's most well-known icons," said McLaren Bahrain dealers Al Ghassan Motors regional director Auf Abdulrahman Al Delaimi yesterday.
"Work on the facility has already started and the showroom is expected to open by November."
Al Delaimi was speaking on the sidelines of a McLaren drive event and briefing held exclusively for our sister publication, the Gulf Daily News.
"The brand represents exclusivity and that is what we are presenting in Bahrain as well," he said. "The showroom will overlook the highway and display the McLaren signage prominently."
During a presentation about the company, McLaren Automotive Middle East and Africa regional marketing and public relations manager Tom Pryor said it was looking to promote its flagship high-performance MP4-12C as a "car for the road" as it seeks to redefine the parameters for high-performance sports car design.
He said the brand was "not just a car but a fully fledged new high-performance sports car company and a full range of high-performance sports cars".
"We are already well-established in the Middle East and have special plans for Bahrain."
Pryor said the Middle East was selected to be its first regional retail network and would complement retail outlets in Dubai, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE as well as a service centre in Lebanon.
"It is only a year since we started operations and launched the MP4-12C, but the brand is already well-established in the racing circuit. We now want it to be a car that one can drive in city conditions and feel comfortable," he said.
Pryor revealed the McLaren Production Centre in Woking, England, will allow production to increase to around 4,000 cars once the range is complete.
"These cars will be mid-engine highly efficient, high-performance sports cars," he said.
Bahrain owns a 42 per cent stake in the McLaren Group through the Bahrain Mumtalakat Holding Company - the government's investment wing, and also owns 50pc of McLaren Automotive.
Pryor said the company has been successful in transferring Formula One technology to the road with the MP4-12C featuring a 3.8-litre twin turbo V8, seven-speed gearbox with a top speed of 330km/hr.
"All of which means that the MP4-12C can accelerate from 0-100 km/hr in just 3.1 seconds on hot-weather Corsa tyres, making it even quicker than the legendary McLaren F1 road car, acknowledged by many experts as the best car ever built," he said.
"The 0-200 km/hr figure is an equally breathtaking 8.9 seconds.
"More importantly, when it comes to occupant safety, the new McLaren is equally adept at coming to a halt - it can brake from 100 km/hr to standstill in just 30.5 metres, equivalent to less than seven body lengths," said Pryor.
McLaren Automotive Middle East and Africa regional director Mark Harrison and Al Ghassan Motors McLaren brand specialist Gemma Renton also attended the presentation. – TradeArabia News Service