One Supercar Brand Says “No” to SUVs
In recent years, supercar brands such as Ferrari and Lamborghini have decided to venture into the SUV market. This has been a surprise for many, unlike when Bentley or Rolls-Royce jumped ship. Regardless, even Aston Martin and Lotus are planning SUV models for the market. But, one major supercar company is saying no. McLaren intends to avoid the SUV market, unlike the competition. So, there will be no McLaren SUV arriving in the future. Honestly, avoiding the SUV market is a reasonable option, especially with the pure competition going on between the other companies now.
CEO Mike Flewitt’s Interview with Automotive News
Recently, McLaren’s CEO Mike Flewitt spoke with Automotive News about this exact topic. From the conversation, a McLaren SUV seems completely off the table.
”I’m not against SUVs… They are just not what McLaren does.” – Statement by McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt
This statement makes it clear that McLaren does not vision itself as a SUV company. Within reasonable observance, this statement is true. McLaren succeeds largely at creating vehicles in the supercar realm. Hence, staying within that will allow McLaren to spend more resources on what matters, the newest models to its fleet.
”When we decide to do a product there are three simple tests: It has to be right for the brand and right for the customer base, we’ve got to have the technology to do the best car in class, and we’ve got to make money… An SUV starts to reduce the purity of the brand as a supercar driver’s brand. Secondly, we don’t have the technology. Can you imagine from a standing start if we wanted to go out and do a better car than a Range Rover, or a Cayenne – the billions we’d have to invest? Third, therefore, is we wouldn’t make any money. So, it doesn’t tick any box.” – Statement by McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt
Obviously, from these remarks, CEO Mike Flewitt doesn’t see a McLaren SUV as a reasonable investment. Firstly, the car is not right for their brand or clientele. Secondly, McLaren feels it will degrade their supercar basis. Thirdly, McLaren doesn’t have or want the technology needed to build a SUV from scratch. Avoiding billions in investment isn’t a bad thing, as this will allow McLaren to invest otherwise. Regardless, there will be plenty of other supercar or ultra-luxury SUVs to choose from.
But… What About Electric Vehicles?
Unlike never owning a McLaren SUV, it will be possible to own a McLaren EV in the future. Not surprisingly, McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt is for EVs. But, McLaren will need a lot of preparation work in the battery creation realm.
”A McLaren EV has got to be usable… It shouldn’t be that we offer a powertrain solution that compromises. It won’t just be lower emissions, it’ll be a better sports car. We’ve set ourselves half an hour full-on track use. You need to be able to do that without recharge, and when you come in and recharge it needs to recharge in 30 minutes.” – Statement by McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt
McLaren aims to bring an EV to market, but first, it must be reliable on the track. Not only will they offer lower emissions but aim to build a better car. The goal is to allow a driver 30 minutes of track intensive driving before having to charge for 30 minutes. So, downtime may be a bit longer than simply filling a tank, but electrical wise, this is a very high expectation. Building a battery like this will take high investment, research and development, and more. It most likely will not happen, but companies such as Tesla seem to have a hold on this, so maybe reaching out for some co-operative work isn’t a bad idea… or maybe it is?
No to McLaren SUV, Yes to McLaren EV
We Build Sports Cars, Not SUVs: McLaren CEO – Bloomberg – YouTube
Overall, the decision to avoid a McLaren SUV is reasonable, without a doubt. On the other hand, entering the EV market is a must. An EV will allow McLaren to retain full supercar status while offering a modern take on technology. By avoiding an SUV, McLaren saves billions in investment funding as well as headaches. First generation SUVs tend to arrive with problems, such as the Cayenne 10 years ago. Regardless of this decision, plenty of SUV options will be readily available by Aston Martin, Ferrari, Lamborghini, and even Lotus. In conclusion, McLaren’s decision to avoid SUVs wasn’t really a surprise anyway.
Below, a picture of the Lamborghini Urus is shown as a representation of the supercar SUVs currently on market.