You may have read one of my previous articles about the new Super Series McLaren will be unveiling at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. The British brand has been keen to stress that this will be a new era for McLaren Automotive and it will look build on the rapid growth that’s been achieved.
As demand grows then naturally the facilities need to follow suit. So it seems only natural that McLaren has announced it will be opening a new production plant in Sheffield to support the next phase of production. The plant will open up over 200 brand new jobs through a combined investment of £50million with the support of Sheffield County Council.
This facility is the first bespoke facility outside of the main HQ in Woking, Surrey but will not be responsible for full car production. Instead, the new Composites Technology Centre will have the task of producing the carbon fibre Monocell and Monocage chassis which will be used in the next generation of McLaren models.
The new facility, which will be based within the Advance Manufacturing Research Centre at Sheffield University, will start construction in the next few months with the first pre-production chassis expected to be ready in the second half.
At the launch event at the AMRC in Sheffield, Mike Flewitt, Chief Executive Officer of McLaren Automotive commented: “In 1981, McLaren was the first company to recognise the exceptional properties of carbon fibre, and we have designed the highly-technical material it to be at the heart of every McLaren road and racing car ever since. The now-iconic McLaren F1 was the world’s first road car to be built with a carbon fibre chassis and every car built more recently by McLaren Automotive has the same. Creating a facility where we can manufacture our own carbon fibre chassis structures is therefore a logical next step.
He continued: “We evaluated several options to achieve this objective but the opportunity created by the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre at the University of Sheffield was compelling. At the AMRC, we will have access to some of the world’s finest composites and materials research capabilities, and I look forward to building a world-class facility and talented team at the new McLaren Composites Technology Centre.”