McLaren Automotive plans petrol-electric hybrid supercars

Published: 15 October 2010

McLaren Automotive is planning a range of petrol-electric hybrid supercars, CAR can confirm today. Work is underway and McLaren will launch hybrid, electric-assisted sports cars in the next three years.

We've uncovered a recruitment plan to assemble a team of hybrid engineers at the McLaren's Woking HQ in Surrey, England.

CAR has tracked down industry job adverts recruiting 'electrical engineers [with experience of] hybrid electric vehicle systems.' The objective? 'Concept, design and development of the electrical package and wiring system for a hybrid electric vehicle.'

Hybrid McLaren supercars: when can I buy an electric McLaren?

The first hybrid from McLaren Automotive is likely to be the new range-topping supercar due in a couple of years' time; the hybrid tech planned will be expensive and McLaren bosses Ron Dennis and Antony Sherrif are understood to believe the cost will be more readily absorbed by a cutting-edge, money-no-object supercar such as their proposed Carrera GT rival more than a cheaper model.

McLaren is planning a three-strong range of sports cars, starting with the MP4-12C arriving in spring 2011. It will be priced around £170,000, mirroring the cost of the petrol-only Ferrari 458 Italia (Ferrari is also considering hybridised supercars).

The entry-level McLaren sports car

An 'entry-level' McLaren is then expected to slot in beneath the 12C, aimed more at higher-end Porsche 911s.

However, since all three model lines will use the similar MonoCell carbonfibre tub and the turbocharged V8, the hybrid tech under development is likely to be rolled out across the range in the fullness of time.

The full advert for McLaren's hybrid engineers

For a complete reproduction of the job ad placed by McLaren, click 'Next' below.


How McLaren is recruiting a team of hybrid engineers

Details of Vacancy for Electrical Engineer - Hybrid Electric Vehicle Systems
Title: Electrical Engineer - Hybrid Electric Vehicle Systems
Department: Electrical
Salary: £
Job Purpose: Concept, design and development of the electrical package and wiring system for a hybrid electric vehicle.

Key responsibilities:
* High voltage electrical system wiring specification and design for a hybrid electrical vehicle including routing and connectivity strategy to energy storage systems, power converters, powertrain and existing low voltage system.
* Systems packaging – Control unit and component packaging in accordance with project requirements for cooling, orientation, EMC, DVP, high voltage connectivity and safety.
* Systems engineering – Hazard analysis and risk management, DFMEA, verification and validation planning.
* Supplier management – Engineering, timing, cost and weight in order to achieve program targets.
* Support of UK and overseas whole vehicle and component testing activities including functional, environmental and EMC.
* Roll-out to production of an electrical wiring system, including support for production and guidance for installation and rework by Manufacturing and Service departments.
* Preparation and presentation of information to support both external and internal project status reviews and the project management team as necessary.

Knowledge and Experience required:
* Demonstrable experience of electrical distribution system development - specifically circuit design, wiring/fusing systems and electrical packaging.
* Practical experience of hybrid electrical vehicle architectures and wiring system applications.
* Knowledge of power electronics, AC Motors and energy storage technologies.
* Experience in design for good EMC practice.
* Full product lifecycle activities including concept maturation, design management, issues control and resolution, cost and weight management, supplier management, series manufacturing and subsequent support activities.
* Experience of system/component delivery within a APQP, six sigma or similar framework (FMEA, quality planning, PPAP etc).
* Experience of working in/for low–medium volume vehicle projects.
* CATIA V5 R16 or later (visualisation via DMU).
* Experience of using software based off-board diagnostic tools.
* Electrical, Electronic Systems, Automotive or similar honors Engineering Degree.  Other recognized engineering qualifications combined with relevant significant experience may be considered.
* Chartered Engineer or similar professional accreditation desirable.

Essential Criteria:
* Excellent communication and co-ordination skills - at ease coordinating a team of engineers and suppliers.
* Flexible, enthusiastic individual who is self-motivated and able to work well under own initiative.
* Able to remain focused under pressure.
* Capable of representing a world class automotive brand at the highest levels.

Sounds great! I could do that job...

Sadly, the closing date for applications was 30 September 2010. However, we're sure you could drop Ron a line.

We can't wait to see what McLaren's hybrid supercars can do. Stay tuned to CAR Online for the first news from McLaren.

By Tim Pollard

Editorial director of CAR's digital publishing arm. Motoring news magnet