Blow out those candles, McLaren, you’re officially over the hill. On September 2 nd of this year, the McLaren Group will celebrate its 50th birthday, undoubtedly to much fanfare. Founded in 1963 by competitive driver Bruce McLaren at the age of 26, McLaren Group has a lot to celebrate.
The infamous McLaren Formula 1 racing team has dominated Grand Prix competitions since triumphing at the Monaco Grand Prix in 1966. From then on, McLaren’s Formula 1 has won more than 182 races, more than any other constructor to date.
The British car manufacturer also has an impressive reputation in the North American racing circuits. The McLaren CanAm series won five successive championships from 1967-1971 and 43 races in the V8 behemoths. At the 1974 and 1976 Indy 500, McLaren’s Indycar Series took the top honors.
Since its unveiling in 1993, McLaren’s street legal F1 continues to be the fastest naturally aspirated production car in the world, even winning 24 Hours of Le Mans at its 1995 Grand Prix debut. In 2003, McLaren continued wowing the public with its Mercedes-Benz collaboration, the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren. The SLR McLaren would go on to become the best-selling carbon-based car ever.
Continuing with this supercar tradition, McLaren debuted the 12C GT3 in 2012. The 12C GT3 went on to take 19 rallying victories that year. The most recent member of the McLaren family, the P1 concept, received much press and universal praise during its debut at the 2012 Paris Motor Show.
However, McLaren’s amazing achievements aren’t just limited to the racetrack. At the 2012 London Summer Olympics, McLaren Applied Technologies helped British cyclists, rowers, sailors and even canoeists take home an impressive 15 gold medals. Keeping with its commitment to improved energy efficiency, McLaren partnered with San Francisco’s Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) to create systems that help the trains run more efficiently, as well as working with airliners and airports to reduce CO2 emissions from on-ground plane traffic.
Needless to say, we can’t wait to see what McLaren does in the next half-century.