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McLaren MP4-12C to get tweaks with improved sound

July 20, 2011

After a number of slightly disappointing reviews from the world’s motoring press, McLaren has announced it will make tweaks to the McLaren MP4-12C production cars this week. The main tweaks will involve giving the 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 a decent voice box, with louder tones.

McLaren has taken recent reviews to heart and wants to give the big Mac a fresh tune to enhance “emotional appeal”. The company says it does not want the MP4-12C to be placed below the Ferrari 458 Italia quite so easily.

One of the main changes McLaren has announced is a re-tuned engine note. Reviews of the MP4-12C at its launch said the car lacked the drama and aura of the Ferrari 458, suggesting the exhaust was a little too quiet. McLaren said it had planned to make changes for the production car customers would get, but now changes are being applied with more urgency.

A McLaren spokesman recently made an announcement of the changes, saying,

“We want drivers to enjoy the car a bit more. The changes don’t lead to any performance increase, but they do lead to an emotional increase when you drive the car.”

To spice things up a bit in the noise department McLaren is tweaking the MP4-12C’s Intake Sound Generator, which is a tube that runs from the plenum chamber to the cabin, interfered by a butterfly. The butterfly will now open wider for extra in-car sensations.

McLaren says that the changes will only be applied when the MP4-12C is put into Track mode, via a button on the dash. The spokesman said,

“It was a bit too sensible before. You won’t notice the changes in normal mode, just when you’re really having fun and pushing it.”

(source: Autocar)

Brett is the editor and founder of PerformanceDrive. He's obsessed with driving, having played with Matchbox cars until he was tall enough to drive a real one. After initially working as a mechanic, Brett earned a degree in journalism and entered media as an editorial assistant at Top Gear Australia magazine. He then worked at CarAdvice.com.au. His dream is to live next door to the Nurburgring in Germany.