BBC2 How to build....McLaren MP4-12c

#1
Did anyone watch this last night?

I found it fascinating, I let my little lad stay up to watch it (he is car mad). I loved the sheer OCD of it, like sending back the castors for the car jig/trolley because the rubber on them was the wrong colour. And the associated business such as the chap at Ricardo who designed the sound or the chap forging the pistons. People really fired up about doing their job and doing it well, like the guys in the paint shop.

I watched a programme like this about the RR Trent engines and it made me feel really proud to be British. Industries using secret techniques which they have developed to make stuff that nobody else can.

When people say we don't make anything any more I say bollocks. We make some incredible stuff in this country and we could make even more. This is where we should be heading, leading the high tech and super hi tech industries.

Lovely car too, especially in Volcanic Red!
 
#2
I agree a facinating programme. I liked the manner in which the young 19 year old girl did the intro into the 'workshop' and was there in the final scenes to join the manufacturing process up. Less than a day to switch locationsto the new workshop. Impressive by any logistical standards. The fella who " gets the sound of the engine right" a skill supported by the scene with Jenson Button roaring off followed by Lewis Hamilton with the window down listening to his engine sound. Well worth a watch.
 

the_boy_syrup

LE
Book Reviewer
#3
On a similer vein

Discorvery are doing a mega factory series

Last couple of weeks have covered Aston and Bentley.

Very good showing design and enginering at their best.
 
#4
Cracking programme. I was surprised to see two paint sprayers, one doing each side of the car. I know Lambo's painters (read shed down some side street), one does all the exterior, one does the interior. They reckon an expert would notice the difference in spray technique.
 
#5
it was a good show. IMO.

Attention to detail - wonderful. All the times I prepared for a locker inspection in basic training and not getting picked up, seems like a hollow victory
 
#7
The truth is nothing like the documentary

The engine was designed and built by two other companies

And pretty much everything was copied /modified from a ferrari

The factory is straight out of stewert ford mk 15 years ago

Rd is a copper bottomed cnut in my humble opinion and his firm have been proved to be similar
 
#8
Potentially an interesting programme, but ruined by BBC dumbing down and little real exploration of technology.

Super clean bodyshop that hair-gel damages, why un-hooded hairy heads?

Completely ruined by uneducated narrator "A V8 engine is basically two four stroke engines joined together ... blah blah ... the piston coming up pushes the exhaust valve open".

Oh for the days when QED, Horizon etc were accurate, informative and stimulating.
 
#9
Random thinking has thrown up a conundrum. The programme reported that R&D (and the new factory?) cost McLaren £800m.

Price of car was iirc £165k. Assuming a very generous profit of £100k per car, which seems much too generous, gives:

10 sales = £1m
100 = £10m
1,000 = £100m
10,000 = £1,000m

10,000 sales of one model seems as unrealistic as £100k profit per car sold.

Ferrari sold 6,573 cars in 2010 with ROS (Return on Sales) of 15.8 per cent and Trading Profit of 302.7 million Euro.

I can't see how McLaren can make a profit on their £800m investment. What do you think?
 

maguire

LE
Book Reviewer
#10
Random thinking has thrown up a conundrum. The programme reported that R&D (and the new factory?) cost McLaren £800m.

Price of car was iirc £165k. Assuming a very generous profit of £100k per car, which seems much too generous, gives:

10 sales = £1m
100 = £10m
1,000 = £100m
10,000 = £1,000m

10,000 sales of one model seems as unrealistic as £100k profit per car sold.

Ferrari sold 6,573 cars in 2010 with ROS (Return on Sales) of 15.8 per cent and Trading Profit of 302.7 million Euro.

I can't see how McLaren can make a profit on their £800m investment. What do you think?
the Mp4/12 is not their only concern - they have their finger in a lot of pies.
 
#11
Appreciate McLaren have other programmes which may use the factory. However, I still can't see how they will ever make a profit on their £800m expenditure.

Let's be generous and assume McLaren can achieve a 20% ROS compared to Ferrari's 15.8%. McLaren need to sell 24,243 to break even; ignoring interest on loans, opportunity costs etc.

I still can't see any profit, can you?
 
#12
Ever seen the price to service one of these bastards. It's feckin horrendous. Couldn't tell you exactly without making a few calls but my niece used to work at Mclaren and regularly saw bills over £30k for servicing the old F1.
 
#13
They have 3 other models in the pipeline. But this is a huge vanity project for ron dennis.

I am sure the government has given them a lot of sweeteners. The planning permission for the factory went through very quickly.

They were fined a fortune for copying ferrari in f1 and what do you think they used as a mule for this ???
 

the_boy_syrup

LE
Book Reviewer
#14
They have 3 other models in the pipeline. But this is a huge vanity project for ron dennis.

I am sure the government has given them a lot of sweeteners. The planning permission for the factory went through very quickly.

They were fined a fortune for copying ferrari in f1 and what do you think they used as a mule for this ???


Is that you Lewis?
 
#15
Thought it was a good programme. Flew over the McLaren complex the other week (about 4 times actually whilst stacked over LHR) and its an impressive complex from the air.

Good to see some quality British engineering
 

maguire

LE
Book Reviewer
#16
Thought it was a good programme. Flew over the McLaren complex the other week (about 4 times actually whilst stacked over LHR) and its an impressive complex from the air.

Good to see some quality British engineering
I was shown around it a few weeks ago - for anyone with an appreciation of either engineering, racing, cars, or all three, it was absolutely breathtaking. as for the profit ratio on the mp4/12, it's only one part of what goes on at the MTC. you have the F1 team and the income from that. you have the electronics division (providing, among other things, the standard ECU for use in F1 cars). there is an engineering/technology arm nominally seperate from both the race and road-going car operations. plus the whole operation overall has probably as much as it needs from the TAG group and its other major shareholders. so the £800 million is not coming solely from the selling of road cars by any means.