He was a flamboyant man who did not care about the masses and dared to go against the grain. He always had women around him and lit up a cigarette after every race. He had a clear picture of how the perfect race car should look like and with these ideas he founded Bruce McLaren Motor Racing in 1963. A year later, the first McLaren racing car was produced: the M1A. It was the beginning of a success story that ended much too soon ten years later.
McLaren introduced the M1A and M1B, followed by the M2B, which was the first Formula 1 car of the brand. Bruce McLaren was one of only two people ever to win a Grand Prix in a car carrying its own brand name. Successes started accumulating, as the McLaren racing team delivered sensational results race after race. The team was solid and with Bruce McLaren as the leader nothing seemed impossible. Until 1970, when suddenly there was an end to the success. Bruce McLaren crashed during a test drive of the McLaren M8D, which took his life at the age of 32. A huge, destructive blow to the company, but this did not hold McLaren back.
“The talent and extraordinary enthusiasm of how Bruce approached motorsport has always been the foundation of McLaren”
The talent and extraordinary enthusiasm of how Bruce McLaren approached motorsport has always been the foundation of McLaren. This remained unaffected after his passing away. Barely twelve days after the crash, two final versions of the M8D were at the starting line of the Cam-Am races. Dan Gurney was flown in to replace Bruce as a driver. Despite having never driven the M8D before, he won the race. The McLaren team eventually won nine out of the ten Can-Am races in 1970, all driven in the M8D.
In 1993 McLaren took the leap from the racing circuit to the normal road. They introduced the McLaren F1, a technical feat. Light, fast, safe and an aerodynamic masterpiece. The technical knowledge and almost obsessive attention to detail created a sublime car. A few years later, the McLaren 12C followed, using Formula 1 technology as a base, just like F1. The 12C was also the first McLaren with the characteristic wing doors.
Today, McLaren cars are still the epitome of technology. Racing, innovation and a healthy dose of competitiveness are in their DNA. McLarens are made with a love for speed, attention to detail and the very best technical knowledge. Anyone who adds a McLaren to their collection becomes a member of a unique family. A family which is connected by a love for speed, an eye for detail and the ultimate driving experience. Ready. Commit. Belong.
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