Battle of the spiders: Ferrari vs McLaren
Which V8 drop-top supercar is best? 458 or 12C? Time for a road trip...
Posted: 24 Jun 2013
In an effort to explain what's going on, we have to start at the beginning, with the blood and bones. Underneath, the 12C is McLaren's take on a race car for the road, what it calls a carbon-fibre MonoCell, bracketed with aluminium frames to hang important things like wheels and suspension. A chassis so stiff that it requires no extra bracing to cope without a roof. The 458, on the other hand, is an aluminium jigsaw variously extruded and heat-formed using processes nicked from the aerospace industry, strengthened to cope without the keystone of the top bit. In both cases, the actual roof is non-structural, meaning that the car will handle identically roof up or down, and neither has suddenly gained a huge amount of weight. The Mac weighs just 40kg more than the coupe; the 458, a similar 50kg more than its hard-top brother.