Posted on May 05, 2013

McLaren Automotive, the luxury high-performance sports car business that has its Middle East regional headquarters in Bahrain, has experienced an exceptionally strong start to 2013 across the Middle East as it strengthens its GCC network. A strong end to 2012 for sales of the McLaren 12C Coupe (the reigning Middle East Car of the Year), and 12C Spider, has continued into 2013, with increased production for the region, driven by customer demand, leading to higher than anticipated sales.

Mark Harrison, McLaren Automotive Regional Director Middle East and Africa, said: "Despite a fixed production volume at our UK headquarters, McLaren is expanding its global network by a third in 2013 to over 50 retailers in this, our 50th anniversary year. This naturally increases demand within our network for every car from the planned production volume. Our Middle East retailers anticipated a strong start to the year therefore we secured extra production slots for the first quarter 2013 to support their businesses. It is proving to be an exceptionally encouraging start to the year for us after a great first full year of business in 2012."

And it is not just on the sales front where McLaren is growing, as three new showrooms in the Middle East are set to further strengthen the brand’s position in the region.

The opening of the new landmark McLaren Manama showroom in Bahrain during the 2013 Formula 1™ Gulf Air Grand Prix two weeks ago will soon be followed by the first McLaren showroom in Qatar, due to open in Doha at the end of May. And a temporary McLaren Riyadh facility will also open this month whilst a new permanent state-of-the-art showroom is under construction in the Saudi capital. McLaren is matching strong demand for its 12C model against continued expansion in the region.

Qatar Airways Network

The McLaren P1, meanwhile, has engaged and excited potential customers in equal measure following its tour of Bahrain – the home of Mumtalakat, McLaren’s principal shareholder - and the UAE in February in prototype form, and subsequent debut in production form at the 2013 Geneva Auto Show in March.

The Middle East region takes about 10 per cent of all 12C production, whereas demand for the P1 in the Middle East is driving the regional office to try and secure well over 10 per cent of McLaren P1 allocation. But with just 375 P1s confirmed to be built from late-2013, the car will still remain a rarity on the roads of Manama, Dubai or Riyadh.

Mark Harrison commented: “The McLaren P1 made its Middle East debut in Bahrain in early February and moved onto the UAE where it caused quite a stir. I am hopeful that some of the first P1s built later this year will come to the region as there is a huge passion here for both performance and limited edition cars. Our aim for the McLaren P1 is for it to be the best driver’s car in the world, and to build fewer than our main rivals’ supercar models, thereby satisfying that passion.”