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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Los Angeles

    Manufacture defect cylinder head MP4-12C ?

    Trying to find out just how many are having problems with cracked Cylinder Heads and Gaskets on the MP4.

    I own 11 cars and thought i would buy a Mclaren MP4 to see if i liked the brand before going all out for a 650s. A few months ago i bought a MP4 to use as a daily driver (it was promoted it could be) yet within just a few months and a few thousand miles i saw multiple problems from radiator hose going, fogged rear lights, key not working as the security system had shut down to finally the other day the cylinder head cracked. Mclaren refused to fix it on their dime even though it had an extended warranty from the previous owner (yep found out that it doesnt pass to new owner).

    The problem i have though is the fact that Mclaren claim this is a rarity yet after a few calls to different dealers and some research on this website it seems that it is a common problem and in fact could be a design fault which is going to kill the used prices if this is fact as no one will want one.

    My Lambo has 106k miles and only needed services and clutch, Ferrari califonria only needs servicing , Rolls Royce same, Bentley Gtc same etc., etc.

    Here is what i found and i hope if you are reading it hasnt happened to you but if you have a radiator hose blow and start finding the car missfiring it probably means the head is starting to crack. I had told this to Tampa Mclaren and they said the car was fine but within 2k miles of fixing the hose the cylinder head was gone and i am left with a 30k bill.

    If your radiator hose, cylinder head has cracked i would appreciate your input.

    Before anyone asks i always let the car warm up until the oil and water are out of the blue and into the grey and also wait 30 seconds before turning it off.
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    Last edited by NicoleJS; 11-15-2016 at 07:47 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Los Angeles
    Yea this is the first cylinder issue I've read about. So sorry to hear. There must be something more to the extended warranty issue. I believe there is a way to transfer it to the next owner, but honestly, I don't remember what it is. But it's worth looking into.
    But this car sounds like it's got a full monty of problems, which is pretty unusual to have so many problems all once. We have seen about half a dozen lemons here over time, and this adds to that pile, but something about the intensity of the problems you've experiences makes me suspicious about that car. To have so much go so profoundly wrong after they claimed it was fine as daily, just to suddenly go all wrong like that, something seems off.
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    Last edited by Luxion; 12-27-2016 at 02:07 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Hi All, I know this is a post from a couple of years ago. I'm new to the forum, and I'm answering the question as I have worked for Mclaren building the GT3/GT4 race engines and building/see the development engines. I left Mclaren just over a year ago so now I can write things and help as I am starting my business to specialise with Mclaren engines as I know there issues. And this one is an issue which we have seen a lot and normal on the early cars. The fix only really happen for the 650 as Mclaren used a smaller exhaust valve which allowed Mclaren/Ricardo to have more material between the exhaust valves in the cylinder head which stopped the problem. The problem is that the bridge (the area between the two exhaust valves in the combustion chamber) is too small and overheats due to the amount of material which gets so hot, it cracks between the two valves and then you have the stream/smoke from the exhaust.

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