Woking, England – McLaren has introduced the MP4-12C, the first in a range of high-performance sports cars from the racing car company. The new vehicle uses Formula 1-inspired engineering, revolutionary chassis architecture, and focus on efficiency.

The 12C, and future models within the range, will challenge the world’s best sports cars, the company said. Twenty years of sports car design, engineering and production have driven Ron Dennis, McLaren automotive chairman, to announce his plans for an ultimate lineup of technology-led and customer-focused performance cars for the 21st century.

McLaren’s automotive division has already built the McLaren F1, from 1993 to 1998, and the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, from 2003 to 2009.

“It is a long-held dream of mine to launch a range of high-performance sports cars that set new standards in the industry,” Dennis said. “We began designing and building cars for aficionados of thoroughbred sports cars almost 20 years ago. Incorporating the leading-edge technologies that the McLaren Group has built up within its various companies, I believe we are now perfectly placed to open up this new chapter in McLaren’s history as well as play a part in the regeneration of high-tech manufacturing in the U.K. and global automotive environment.”

The McLaren MP14-12C features a carbon fibre chassis structure, the first time a car in this market segment is based around this lightweight engineering solution, and the first time any car has ever featured a one-piece carbon fibre structure. It will use no carryover parts from any other car, and will be produced by McLaren in the U.K., going on sale through a dedicated worldwide retailer network in early 2011. It will be in the core sports car market for cars costing between £125,000 and £175,000.

Connect with Autos.ca