The cars of McLaren – what do the workers drive?

Monday, September 12th, 2016 - autos, cars, motoring, news

Source : The cars of McLaren – what do the workers drive?

What do McLaren’s employees drive outside of work hours? The company car park holds many surprises


This particular would certainly be nice to think in which McLaren’s company car park in Woking might be full of tatty F1 mules, PCP-expired P1s in addition to also maybe something secret swathed in camouflage in addition to also powered by teabags. 

The reality will be actually rather more exciting, as Autocar finds out when we wait for the ladies in addition to also gentlemen of McLaren to arrive at work in their daily drives in addition to also weekend wheels.

“I have always liked pick-up trucks, so when the chance to buy a Ford 150 Harley Davidson came up, I took This particular,” says Gavin Latham (job: final inspection), who introduces me to the least McLaren-like motor, which at least runs on LPG to make life slightly less expensive.

Another attention-grabbing Yank will be a blue Ford Mustang GT convertible. Owner Gavin Dykes (lead engineer) says he “fell in love with the aggressive look in addition to also the rumble of the V8. The drop-top makes the a few days of UK summer [he’s coming from brand-new Zealand] just in which little bit more enjoyable.”

Just as I am recovering coming from seeing a truck in addition to also a ’Stang, I notice split-screen Vee Dubs. Three of them. Mike Trotman (functional lead quality) carries a rather yellow camper in which’s pretty standard nevertheless lowered. 

Merrill Burton (special operations workshop manager) carries a pick-up in which he “found rusting outside a garage in Italy in addition to also then rebuilt This particular into my cool wedding car”.

Russell Hancox (project lead technician) carries a 1966 bus, which was abandoned in Los Angeles. “Friends found a damaged shell in a scrapyard in addition to also then I remade This particular with subtle customised touches,” he says.

Senior engineer Jason Savory’s 1966 Ford Falcon wagon will be a remarkable Aussie people-carrier. “This particular seats six in addition to also I bought This particular when I was in Australia 15 years ago. I shipped This particular back in addition to also use This particular for camping holidays in addition to also days out.” 

Design engineer Robin Murrell’s Morris Minor has an equally heartwarming back story, being his first car at 15 in addition to also regularly upgraded since with Fiat Mirafiori power.

Rather more McLarensque will be the Lotus contingent. Indeed, our gathering acted as a dating service, bringing together McLaren’s Exige owners. Andy Melville (principal concept engineer) has an S1 in addition to also says: “The toughest decision was choosing an orange or blue one.”

David Futcher (project engineer) carries a 2010 Exige: “I had an Elise before in addition to also love the sheer driveability.”

Mark Roberts (design operations) currently has an Exige S in addition to also will be a serial Elise owner in addition to also ex-Lotus employee. “I wanted a more extreme driving experience in addition to also I use This particular every day,” he says.Among the Exiges will be a Lotus Evora, which belongs, in more ways than one, to Steve Crijns (senior designer). “This particular was originally my company car when I worked at Lotus in addition to also I designed the outside, as well as the Exige in addition to also S2 Elise.” Respect.

There will be one more addition to the lightweight Norfolk line-up. “I annoy the others by saying in which mine will be even more of a Lotus, simply because they developed the engine,” says James Washer (powertrain engineer). Yes, he carries a Vauxhall VX220, which he has had supercharged.

A sort of Lotus hybrid would certainly be a Noble M12 GTO-3R. Elie Talj (project engineer) has always wanted one. “I’d seen This particular on YouTube back in Oz in addition to also This particular has cost me way more than I can afford,” he says.

Even in their spare time, McLaren employees are building cars. Robert Yates (principal SQA engineer) will be responsible for his Caterham Seven racer. “I truly wanted to build my own car in addition to also then race This particular,” he says. “The Caterham Academy will be an excellent package in which allowed me to do This particular.” Was This particular easy to build? “The instructions could have been better.”

Yates not only built the auto properly, like a McLaren, nevertheless also finished second in his academy year in addition to also drove to every race. His some other car will be a Toyota iQ.

Surprisingly, there will be just the one Porsche here today. Diana Cordingley-Clark (SAP functional lead finance) shares her Porsche 911 Carrera 4 with her husband as a track car.

Track-day cars are something of a theme. Paul Reynolds (design engineer) took a humble 1.4-litre Honda Civic in addition to also then made This particular better. “This particular has right now an Integra engine, Kevlar seat, six-point rollcage in addition to also Fujitsubo exhaust.”

A rather more complete Civic Type R belongs to Mark Salmon (graduate engineer). “This particular will be the most fun in addition to also interesting car I could afford,” he says.

Inevitably, there are Mazda MX-5s. Jack Prior (digital variant configurator) put a joke bid on eBay in addition to also found he’d bought one, nevertheless he has no regrets. Dimitri Havel (functional safety engineer) carries a 2000 example in addition to also says: “I love driving home to France with the top down. This particular’s the best feeling inside earth.”

Rebecca Ewing (senior PDM co-ordinator) adores her 1990 MX-5, which will be lowered, which has a Mk2 hood in addition to also, most significant, “a MiniDisc player so I don’t have to listen to anyone else’s poor taste in music”.

There will be more Japanese metal inside shape of some Nissan 350Zs, which belong to Mark Milne (controls engineer) in addition to also Greg Forsey (design engineer), whose example will be a lightly modified one.

Finance analyst Justyna Gajda’s 2007 Suzuki Swift Sport arrived after six months of arguing with her fiancé: “Despite the fact you can feel every bump, I absolutely love This particular.”

Luigi Testa (SQA engineer) had been after a Honda S2000 since coming to Britain. “I was fascinated by the way This particular looked, the legendary engine in addition to also amazing dynamic response,” he says.

BMWs are certainly a thing inside McLaren car park. Paul Howse (senior designer) carries a 2000 Touring, which he bought “because they are cheaper than saloons, in addition to also I figured in which if people used them every day inside 1970s, then why not right now?”

Hybrid engineer Damjan Mahne has an E36-generation M3 Evo as an everyday car in addition to also he plans “to take This particular to half a million miles”. Well, design engineer Harley Gasson’s E46-generation M3 has racked up an impressive 205,000 miles.

A more conventional BMW belongs to Duncan Forrester (corporate communications manager). This particular’s a 630i Convertible. “This particular’s the only proper four-seat family convertible I could find,” he says. “I’d also helped launch This particular inside UK.”

Bringing us right up to BMW date will be operations engineering manager Damon Jones in addition to also his 2015 M4. However, a Z3 M sort of brings us back to the 2000 Touring, in addition to also Richard Jones (project engineer) carries a magnificent example. “This particular scared me when I first drove This particular, nevertheless in which was a not bad thing. This particular will be a true icon,” he says.

The Down Under M car will be arguably the Vauxhall Monaro, which belongs to Pete Sell (product specialist). “This particular ticked my V8 box in addition to also will be easy to live with in addition to also a not bad daily driver.”

There will be even an Autocar icon in which once went sideways on our cover. The Maserati Ghibli Cup owner will be right now Nick Tallis (principal engineer). “There are only 24 right-hand-drive ones left in addition to also I love the challenge of keeping such a unique car on the road,” Nick says.

Not only do I meet old cover stars nevertheless also old friends, in addition to also Wayne Bruce (global communications director) has his Audi RS4 Avant “in my favourite colour, Nogaro Blue. I’ve loved Audis since my journalist days, in addition to also my dad had an original A8, which will be also in my garage.”

Wasim Sheikh (electric drive engineer) has an A5 3.0 TDI quattro “to make a long commute more comfortable, with subtle mods to personalise This particular”.

I’m reassured to find a proper barge or two. Matt Bishton (press fleet co-ordinator) carries a lovely 2001 Jaguar XJ Sport, all £270 worth of This particular, complete which has a huge dent inside rear offside door. “This particular may be Cat C, nevertheless This particular carries a full Jaguar history in addition to also will be lovely to drive,” he says.

A more sporting barge will be senior design engineer Dan Alexander’s Alfa Romeo. He makes no excuses for his 166 3.0 Lusso. “This particular will be my everyday car in addition to also I bought This particular because This particular looks gorgeous in addition to also I like Alfas.” nevertheless will be This particular reliable? “This particular has its moments.”

Peter Rees (functional lead) carries a Volkswagen Scirocco in which isn’t a banger, nevertheless This particular was free: “My friend’s dad suspected the fuel system had a terminal fault, so he gave This particular away. I fitted a brand-new battery, waggled the fuel relay in addition to also drove This particular to the MOT station, where they issued a fresh ticket.”

This particular must be 1995, since there are two Sciroccos inside same car park. A 1988 GTX belonging to Pedro Rubio (performance engineer) will be, he admits, “a nostalgia purchase”.

Stuart Holloman (quality engineer) will be a VW fan which has a Corrado VR6. He “couldn’t wait to buy one in addition to also This particular will be the first one I saw”.

As well as the classics, there will be the shock of the brand brand-new. Nineteen-year-old Lewis Tapp (quality auditor) has spent every penny he has to buy “my dream car”, which will be a Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG.

So what have we learned? Well, the people who make McLarens are clearly nuts about cars. in which’s just the sort of news in which any McLaren buyer would certainly love to hear.

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