McLaren ArturaMcLaren Artura


McLaren sells heritage cars as it seeks to fund Artura supercar amid deepening losses

  • Supercar manufacturer reports hitting costly technical snag with hybrid supercar project
  • It’s been given almost £35m by majority shareholder in deal involving heritage collection
  • Rare cars have been licensed back to McLaren and are staying at HQ

Time 7:07 am, December 12, 2022

McLaren has sold part of its heritage collection to its main shareholder to raise money for its Artura project.

The manufacturer went in search of the money after discovering that ‘certain technical upgrades’ to the hybrid supercar were needed.

The Bahrain-based sovereign wealth fund Mumtalakat Holding Co – which owns almost 60 per cent of McLaren – agreed to stump up £100m, reported Bloomberg UK.

No details were given about which of the 54 F1 racing and F1 supercars were sold, but in a phone conversation with Bloomberg, McLaren indicated that the latest cash injection wouldn’t be enough.

According to McLaren’s 2021 annual report, its heritage collection was worth around $42m (circa £34.6m) as of December 31.

The collection includes cars driven by Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Niki Lauda and Mika Häkkinen, as well as the one that gave Lewis Hamilton his first World Championship.

The sale-for-cash deal was revealed at the same time as McLaren’s third-quarter earnings were announced. Liquidity by the end of the quarter had fallen from £171m to £87m.

It also reported making a £203m loss during the year to September versus a £69m deficit over the same period in 2021.

A spokesman for McLaren told Car and Driver that the heritage cars would be staying at its HQ near Woking under licence.

It hopes to buy them back when it finalises a recapitalisation plan with shareholders, which it aims to do during the first quarter of next year.

However, a commenter posting on Car and Driver’s website said that it sounded more like McLaren was taking private loans using the vehicles as collateral.

The commenter added: ‘Otherwise if they just sold them & they’re planning on buying them back, they may be in for a surprise…’

In 2020, McLaren axed 1,200 staff, and last year it sold its HQ for just over $200m (circa £163.1m) to a real estate investment trust, signing a 20-year lease as a tenant.

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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