McLaren Confirms SUVs Aren't for Supercar Manufacturers

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
mclaren confirms suvs aren t for supercar manufacturers

Let’s take a moment to consider how ubiquitous sport utility vehicles and crossovers have become. They are, quite literally, everywhere, and reason for this is that they’ve morphed into a jack-of-all-trades type of automobile.

The antiquated definition of SUV included words like “rugged” and “off-road.” But modern examples really only need to ride higher than your typical sedan to qualify. That, along with the segment’s current trendiness, has helped to make such vehicles exceeding popular. So popular, in fact, that practically every automaker is trying to build one to improve sales.

This includes supercar manufacturers. Lamborghini intentionally priced the Urus as an “entry-level” model to ensure volume — and you had better believe Aston Martin and Ferrari will do the same with their upcoming crossovers. Porsche has two SUVs and the more-affordable Macan became its best-selling model last year. However, there is one performance brand that says it has no place for such a vehicle: McLaren.

“I’m not the first person to point out an SUV is neither particularly sporty or utilitarian,” McLaren’s chief designer, Dan Parry-Williams, told Top Gear in a recent interview.

The U.K.-based company says it intends to maintain a performance-driven strategy through 2022. It is dumping over £1 billion into the research and development of 12 new models, but not a single one will be an SUV. Why? Because McLaren says the very concept of a sport utility vehicle clashes with the brand’s motto of “everything for a reason.”

“It’s not ‘everything for a reason,’ unless the reason is to clutter up the streets,” Parry-Williams explained in a rather savage burn.

While McLaren could always change its mind, like Ferrari did, it won’t be able to until after 2022. Executives have confirmed all planned models will use platforms that would make building a crossover next to impossible.

[Image: McLaren]

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  • El scotto El scotto on Jan 20, 2018

    You can't make a "brick on Popsicle sticks" a cornering demon. Looking at you, Ferrari,Porsche, and Maserati. A Bentley SUV? A bald cash grab. Add Mercedes to that column too. BMW X series? Reference "brick on Popsicle sticks" as you try to justify "superior handling". OK, I don't like the X series, not a bit. Cadillac/Lincoln/Lexus? Leather wrapped heated/cooled seats varieties of their GM/FORD/Toyota brothers. Their lesser sibling were built to be SUV's; haul boats, carry dogs and/or shotguns. Most of us are fine with that. McLaren understands supercars; ergo no SUV. Morgan might build you a shooting brake. No, it won't have a lift kit. It might come with Purdy or Holland and Holland shotguns.

  • Flipper35 Flipper35 on Jan 22, 2018

    Mercedes has always had some utility and the cars - other than the AMG branded cars - were never performance driving machines. They were good at getting from a to b in comfort but not really grin inducing on a curvy road. BMW no longer cares to be the "ultimate driving machine" as they have moved consistently more Mercedes like in the last two decades. SUVs fit right in at Bentley since they have always made big cars for people to be driven in so why not a sport utility? Lamborghini is the outrageous brand and if they can't recreate the outrageousness of the LM-002 then they shouldn't be building one. Jeep, LR and such making high performance road going SUVs is a pure mee too money grab.

  • 28-Cars-Later I'm actually surprised at this and not sure what to make of it. In recent memory Senator Biden has completely ignored an ecological disaster in Ohio, and then ignored a tragic fire in Hawaii until his handlers were goaded in sending him and his visit turned into it's own disaster, but we skipped nap time for this sh!t show? Seriously? We really are through the looking glass now, "votes" no longer matter (Hillary almost won being the worst presidential candidate since 1984 before he claimed the crown) and outside of Corvette nostalgia Joe doesn't care let alone know what day it happens to be. Could they really be afraid of Trump, who AFAIK has planned no appearance or run his mouth on this issue? Just doesn't make sense, granted this is Clown World so maybe its my fault for trying to find sense in a senseless act.
  • Tassos If you only changed your series to the CORRECT "Possibly Collectible, NOT Daily Driver, NOT Used car of the day", it would sound much more accurate AND TRUTHFUL.Now who would collect THIS heap of trash for whatever misguided reason, nostalgia for a much worse automotive era or whatever, is another question.
  • ToolGuy Price dropped $500 overnight. (Wait 10 more days and you might get it for free?)
  • Slavuta Must be all planned. Increase price of cars, urbanize, 15 minutes cities. Be poor, eat bugs
  • Sid SB Not seen a Core without the performance pack yet. Prefer the more understated look of the Core vs the Circuit, but both are great fun to drive.