The history of the McLaren name is as exciting and provocative as the deeply etched lines and athletic stance of the current model. It is a legacy fraught with great success, tragic loss, and deep loyalty.

vintage photo of mclaren racing on track

The McLaren’s Founder’s lived and died doing what he loved.

With more than two-decades in the exotic vehicle service and repair industry, Forza Tuning and Performance owner Brenton Brown (a.k.a. The Exotic Car Doc) is familiar with building a rich tradition. The Exotic Car Doc is widely recognized as one of the premier exotic vehicle modification and tuning specialist in the world. Since bringing Forza Tuning and Performance to the sunny shores of Florida’s Gulf Coast, the Exotic Car Doc has added McLaren Service and Repair to high-performance modification and tuning. Forza can now meet all your McLaren needs.

historic photo of mclaren founder

McLaren Automotive is named after a man who, like the Exotic Car Doc, grew up tinkering with cars and machinery in his parent’s home. For Bruce McLaren, his parents owned a service station in his hometown of Auckland, New Zealand. It was there that he was introduced to automobile repair.
As is the case with most young men, tinkering with vehicles fuel his desire to make them go faster and operate more efficiently. An Austin 7 Ulster was the object of McLaren’s affection (at 15-years old) when he found himself in a local hill climb event – which he won.

By the age of twenty-one (1958) Bruce had garnered enough of a reputation as a winning race driver to earn a trip from New Zealand to the United Kingdom as part of the “Driver to Europe” program. This program was designed to draw race car drivers from Australia and New Zealand (to Europe) for eventual participation in Formula One Racing events.

After being introduced to a small firm called Cooper Cars, McLaren’s racing career exploded. At the tender age of twenty-two, he became the youngest person to win the U.S. Grand Prix. McLaren remained with Cooper Cars for seven-years and won the U.S. Grand Prix three more times. He also won the 24-Hours of Le Mans in 1966.

row of fist mclarens

Bruce McLaren Motor Racing was founded in 1963 and the first McLaren race car was built one-year later. A Can Am car, it was called the M1A and only two-dozen were produced. The McLaren M1B was successor to the M1A. The M1B propelled McLaren to the Can Am Championship, where he earned forty-three victories. That is nearly three-times as many as Porsche earned over the same time period.

The first McLaren Formula One car made its debut at the Monaco Grand Prix in 1965. Sadly, Bruce McLaren was killed in a car crash while testing a prototype car in 1970. After many successful years in a race car, he met his end while testing a light sports car with a 165 mph top speed and an 8-second 0-60 mph rating. The prototype was never completed.

Bruce McLaren Motor Racing became McLaren Automotive Limited, which is currently under the umbrella of the McLaren Group. McLaren continues to produce some of the most stylish and innovative competition and street cars on the planet.

Forza Tuning and Performance is committed to honor the legacy of Bruce McLaren and McLaren automobiles by providing exemplary McLaren service and repair.

Luxury vehicle transport is available to all Forza customers within the Continental U.S. This fully enclosed, insured, professional transport is offered as one way or roundtrip service to our McLaren customers.