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Ansar Ali

McLaren MSO and motorsport managing director Ansar Ali.

BRITISH supercar marque McLaren has restructured its special vehicle and motorsport operations, bringing the two divisions together under a single management structure.

Seven months after joining the company as motorsports director, Ansar Ali has been appointed managing director of McLaren Special Operations (MSO) and motorsport, reporting to executive director of global sales and marketing Jolyon Nash.

According to McLaren, the move, which sees the new single department integrated into the sales and marketing division, will lead to newly developed products – racing, customised and MSO-specific models – “that even better suit McLaren customers and retailers without disrupting the unique spirit and entrepreneurial character that has distinguished MSO since its inception”.

“The joining of McLaren Special Operations and motorsport brings together the two areas of the company that design and deliver low-volume, highly bespoke offerings to their respective customers,” Mr Nash said.

“And the integration of that new department into the global sales and marketing function is a logical step, combining all of the revenue-generating areas of the business under one umbrella.

Defining moment: The McLaren 570GT by MSO Concept made its debut on the 18th fairway of the Pebble Beach golf course in August, bearing “styling, feature and material enhancements” that will all become available through the MSO Defined portfolio.

Defining moment: The McLaren 570GT by MSO Concept made its debut on the 18th fairway of the Pebble Beach golf course in August, bearing “styling, feature and material enhancements” that will all become available through the MSO Defined portfolio.

“I am confident that in taking this step, both MSO and motorsport will make an even more significant contribution to the long-term future of McLaren Automotive.”

Mr Ansar joined McLaren in March this year, tasked with developing the motorsport function. He was previously co-founder and chief executive of niche Norfolk-based sportscar marque Zenos Cars, having earlier served as CEO of Caterham Cars from early 2005 to mid-2012.

Prior to that he was general manager of Lotus Cars for almost five years, and earlier in his career spent around six years with Ford working in a variety positions, including corporate finance manager for Ford Credit Europe and area sales manager for Ford of Britain.

One of the MSO division’s most recent projects was a specially enhanced version of the 570GT, which emerged at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance with an electrochromic roof and a host of other modifications.

By Terry Martin

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