McLaren Group denies buyout rumours

McLaren hasn't been sold to Audi, despite reports from the UK claiming the deal was done.

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Scott Collie
Scott Collie
Deputy Editor
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The McLaren Group has shut down rumours of a buyout from Audi.

An Autocar report published this morning claimed the McLaren Group, which comprises the brand’s road car and racing divisions, had been purchased by Audi.

The report pointed to an Autocar source, which said the deal would give the Volkswagen Group a direct line into Formula 1.

The initial report claimed McLaren initially knocked back the Volkswagen Group’s advances, before the two companies reached an agreement.

The McLaren Applied Technologies division responsible for developing electrified powertrain tech was sold to investors in April 2021, and would not have been included in any potential deal.

McLaren has since issued an official statement which says the Autocar report was “wholly inaccurate”.

“McLaren’s technology strategy has always involved ongoing discussions and collaboration with relevant partners and suppliers, including other carmakers, however, there has been no change in the ownership structure of the McLaren Group,” it said in the statement.

Audi isn’t the only German brand that’s recently been linked with McLaren; a report from Automobilwoche claimed BMW is also considering a buyout of the British supercar specialist.

McLaren’s recent financial struggles have been widely reported.

It was “severely affected” by the COVID-19 pandemic, forcing it to cut 1200 jobs in May 2020. It subsequently brought legal action against a group of creditors so it could use the McLaren Technology Centre and its heritage collection as collateral to raise further financing.

A stake in the McLaren Racing division was sold to American sports investment company MSP Sports Capital in December 2020, and in April 2021 the brand sold and re-leased its Woking headquarters.

The McLaren Group freed up more cash in July 2021 by raising money from existing investors (including the Saudi Arabia sovereign wealth fund), and issuing bonds.

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Scott Collie
Scott Collie
Scott Collie is the Deputy Editor at CarExpert.
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