Mclaren cuts to the chase
British luxo-sports brand delivers $100,000 discount
price cuts by Rolls-Royce and Porsche in the past six months.
Other prestige brands, including Mercedes-Benz, say they are compensating their customers by adding equipment and trying to reduce showroom stickers when they introduce all-new models.
But McLaren says it’s all about the bottom line.
‘‘ McLaren believes the super-luxury sports car segment has been historically overpriced in Australia, with a number of the ‘ core’ manufacturers employing premium-pricing policies,’’ says McLaren Automotive Asia- Pacific director Ian Gorsuch.
Many upscale brands have been raking in big profits from the strength of the Australian dollar, though they say they also have to build businesses that can cope with inevitable downturns in exchange rates.
Even companies such as Holden are using profits on imports to offset their losses in local manufacturing.
But lots of luxury customers are paying well below the showroom stickers and McLaren says this discounting has prompted its new move.
‘‘ McLaren’s revised pricing reflects the changing expectations of customers in this category in Australia,’’ Gorsuch says. ‘‘ Many. . . have become accustomed to paying significantly less than the advertised recommended retail price, as competitors in the category heavily discount.’’
McLaren has been struggling for traction in Australia and has been under-achieving globally on sales targets, despite its bullish plans for a full range of cars — including the new P1 supercar — to go head-to-head with Ferrari. Only seven of its MP4-12Cs have been delivered this year.
Ferrari’s running total for 2013 is 34 cars and eight in April. Lamborghini has tallied 30 with six last month.
Ferrari Australia has six confirmed orders for the LaFerrari, despite the $1.5 million-plus price and the fact it is left-hand drive and can’t be driven on local roads.
McLaren reduces the 12C coupe from $492,100 to $398,000 and the 12C Spider from $543,900 to $441,780. The cuts will be passed on, indirectly, to 12C owners who move on to another McLaren, as a special trade-in allowance.
Fast and furious discount: McLaren’s MP4-12C Spider