Our Four McLarens, How? Why?

Recently I been asked several times why we have four McLarens?  This is normally followed by why we currently don’t have more diversity in the garage.  My smart aleck answer normally is we have four because the fifth hasn’t arrived yet.  When asked what the fifth will be, I normally reply a 765LT Spider, if McLaren decides to build one.  The reality is that we have already had the option of adding a fifth McLaren but opted not to go ahead on either the Elva or Sabre for a variety of different reasons (Use Case Rule).  This isn’t actually the first time we have had four cars from the same manufacturer in the garage, its actually the fifth time.  The four times prior to this, they were all Ferraris though. 

The first time we had four Ferraris was back over a decade ago.  That first set included the F40, F50, 308 GTB, and 360 Modena.  Basically, two icons, my daily driver, and a fun classic.  The 308 GTB is the only Ferrari I ever bought spontaneously.  I saw it on a trip to Berlin and immediately was very intrigued with the car.  A bit of research indicated it was the 4th 308 ever built, and that the 308 had belonged to a former race car driver who used it regularly.  I put down a deposit the next day and arranged to have the car shipped back across Europe.  When I got involved with the Fiorano Ferrari track program, the 308 GTB was sold and replaced with a 360 Challenge.  Hence the second set of four was the F40, F50, 360 Modena, and 360 Challenge.  It was quite interesting owning both the road and track version of the Ferrari 360 at the same time.  While they shared a body, in fact they might well have been two completely different cars.  It was manual vs. F1 gearbox, road tires vs. slicks, road vs. race suspension, and different steering set ups.  The race car felt like it had a lot more power lower in the rev range and was significantly lighter. 

Both Ferrari 360s were sold at roughly the same time.  They were replaced in the year that followed first by a Ferrari 365GTB/4 Daytona and then a manual 575 Maranello with the Fiorano Handling Pack was added.  This was a similar use case line up to the 1st set of four with the F40 & F50 being icons, the 575 Maranello being the daily driver, and the 365GTB/4 Daytona as the classic.  This was probably the best balanced of the Ferrari sets as it included two front engine and 2 mid-engine cars.  It was also represented the most cylinders I ever owned at one time with 44.  We had a couple of great road trips with the two front engine V12s.  In many ways they were grandfather and grandson and represented the pinnacle GTs of their generations.

The final set of four Ferraris happened a few years, and several garage iterations, later.  As per the other three, the Ferrari F40 & F50 were the center pieces.  In this case they were joined by a 612 Scaglietti and a 430 Scuderia.  The 612 & 430 Scuderia took turns rotating as the semi daily driver while both enjoyed a few long road trips.  As long range GT’s go, the 612 Scaglietti is hard to beat for both comfort and performance.  An impending move resulted in the unraveling of this garage. 

It would be six years in between the last 4 car Ferrari garage and the first 4 car McLaren garage.  The arrival of the Senna in 2019 completed the set.  It followed the 720S Coupe in 2017 (which was replaced by the 720S Spider in 2019), 675LT Spider in 2016, and 650S Spider in 2015.  Not too dissimilar from several of the Ferrari garages, the current McLaren garage has two icons, the Senna and the 675LT Spider, my daily driver, the 650S Spider, and Mrs. SSO’s favorite McLaren, the 720S Spider.  They all are used frequently and for a few years, the group was split between the mountains of Montana and our main residence.  Post Covid, we will likely return one to the mountains as they are so great to drive in that environment.  Running a 675LT Spider energetically up a mountain road with the top down is a near religious experience.  The fact that we have four McLaren’s right now isn’t that surprising when you consider we have owned 9 in the last decade (Our McLaren History).


On top of the four McLarens, we do still have a bit of diversity in the garage, the Ferrari F40 still sits in its place of honor.  The F40 has now been with us for 15 years and just got its 4th set of different license plates while in our ownership.  In addition to the F40, Mrs. SSO has her beloved Maserati GranTurismo Cabrio, and there is the poor Porsche 911 (997.2) GT3 RS that’s been sitting in Covid enforced isolation in Montana as we were not able to get back out there last summer.  As an apology, I’ve promised the GT3 RS a new set of tires as soon as we are reunited.  There are also a few SUVs which serve as the family workhorses.

In terms of what the future might hold, I can’t imagine we will ever own four Ferraris again.  Maybe two Ferraris but it is very unlikely to ever get to four again.  There will however always be one though, as the F40 is a very long-term keeper.  On the other hand, we might get to a fifth McLaren in the future but that’s still very much theoretical as we do not have one on order.  The one car we do have on order right now is the Scuderia Glickenhaus SCG004S which should arrive in Q2 this year.  As a 3-seater with the center driving position, SCG004S will be a very different experience from any other car we have owned. 



The next article will be on Ferrari & Tesla’s 2020 results.  It will be posted shortly.

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February 2021

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4 Thoughts on Our Four McLarens, How? Why?
    Gary Sutton
    6 Feb 2021

    Thanks again for another good read/insight. A walkaround video of the McLarens and the F40 would be great to watch. Likely?

    7 Feb 2021

    The Senna is just an amazing looking car.

    Nothing else to add.

    22 Feb 2021

    I think the surprise or questions about the 4 McLarens arise in large part because they’re (McLaren’s models) are seen as so similar. Where the F40 and F50 clearly provide different experiences (turbo V8 and green glue vs NA V12 and targa roof), the 430 Scud is the perfect track car, and the 612 comfortable spacious cruising, from the outside McLaren has done very little to differentiate between its models.
    The Senna is clearly different from the rest, but do the 675LT, 650S and 720S really have as much between them, or as clearly demarcated roles given their commonalities?


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