McLaren Boss Explains Why They Won’t Build SUVs | Feature
There is no shortage of fast and/or luxurious SUVs out there. In a sense, Bentley kicked things off with the Bentayga, followed by Rolls-Royce with the Cullinan and more recently the Lamborghini Urus.
Even though those three models don’t necessarily compete with each other, the Urus will at one point meet up with a direct rival courtesy of Ferrari. Now, if that segment is to grow, does that mean McLaren will join the party too? The answer to that question is ‘no’.
McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt recently told TopGear.com that “there’s more than enough SUVs in the world, and we don’t need another one. That’s sort of the flippant side.”
“Effectively when we look at products – and we’re always looking at product concepts – is that there are three measures. One is around the brand, one is around the technology and the other is around the financials.”
“So, the brand: an SUV is only going to dilute the McLaren brand. Our brand and heritage is motorsport and great drivers’ cars. SUVs are great, they have their place, but they’re not great drivers’ cars. They utterly dilute the driving experience so it makes no sense,” said Flewitt.
He then went on to note how many of the big, luxury SUVs are made by the same group (referring of course to the VW Group), which is an approach McLaren can’t compete with right now.
“Nothing wrong with them, but we don’t have a technology set that suits an SUV, so we’d be starting from scratch. And we’re not arrogant to think we can go up against the Range Rovers and Cayennes of this world with a better can than them overnight.”
Last but not least is the financial side of things, where Flewitt argued that since McLaren don’t have the tech ready and they also wouldn’t even be first-to-market with this type of product, there genuinely wouldn’t be any reason for them to begin mass-producing a people hauler.
“You have to invest from scratch and we wouldn’t make any money out of it. After all that, why the hell would we do this? The customers too aren’t really chomping at the bit to get a McLaren SUV. The customers love what we do.”
While we can understand all the reasons for which McLaren is unwilling to build an SUV, a lot of them could apply to Ferrari as well, and as we all know, the boys in Maranello are already working on a Lamborghini Urus rival.