The 12C Spider has also been tested by several German magazines in 2013. Google translation from German.
Sport Auto, July 2013, Christian Gebhardt
Like the coupe, the 12C Spider permits its driver to approach quickly the handling limits. Rarely has a central engine sportscar of more than 600hp displayed such an easy and safely controllable handling behavior. Bad manners are a foreign concept for this car, even at the limit of its handling envelope.
The steering is precise and smooth, but not too light and somewhat synthetic like the Ferrari 458. Only the return torque could be better. The high level of traction could lead us to suspect that the 12C Spider has been quietly and secretly cheating under a four-wheel drive system. Of course this is not the case.
The rear-wheel driven roadster uses like the coupe an electronically controlled suspension (ProActive Chassis Control), which operates without transverse stabilizers and mechanical locking differential. The good traction level is achieved by selective braking interventions at the inside rear wheel (Brake Steer system).
But too much traction on the rear axle and too little on the front axle is counterproductive - and that is precisely the case of the 12C. In the first fast lap of the Hockenheim circuit the McLaren steers still very nicely, despite a slight tendency to understeer. After two fast laps of this small winding circuit, the Pirelli P Zero Corsa front tires start to suffer and as a consequence the 12C loses about two-tenths of a second per lap.
But we are complaining about a laptime of 1.09,2 minutes and the unofficial title of fastest roadster on the Hockenheim circuit. Ferrari and Lamborghini already know that, which is why they categorically refuse comparative tests against the 12C Spider. There can probably not be any greater praise.!
With the 12C Spider, McLaren has achieved a fascinating and successful roadster development after the coupe. The Spider can not only convince from a driving dynamics point of view with fast lap times and powerful accelerations, but with the optional sports exhaust system it becomes one of the most emotional sportscars with a twin turbocharged engine. The build quality of the British athlete is very good, but this is also to be expected given the juicy base price of 231 650 Euros.
Auto Motor und Sport Heft 13 2013, Marcus Peters
There remains room for improvement on numerous details. The park beeper is so quiet that it is covered by even the smallest volume setting of the radio. The D and R buttons of the dual clutch transmission frequently don’t react at the first pressure. The tachometer jerks, instead of rushing smoothly. The fan of the air conditioner is loud. The operating concept of the multimedia system is a catastrophe. And the reflections on its screen are so strong that it is often not readable. In addition, the single-arm wiper can barely keep the field of view free from heavy rain.
Compared to the Coupe, the McLaren MP4-12C Spider has evolved significantly - even toward more emotionality. The performance is stunning, but there remain some points of criticism.
Là encore, grosses louanges concernant le châssis, neutre et très bienveillant qui permet d'approcher les limites de la voiture sans difficultés. Sport Auto apprécie particulièrement la direction, qu'il trouve presque meilleure que celle de la 458 Italia, ainsi que la motricité, allant même jusqu'à plaisanter au sujet de l'utilisation secrète de 4 roues motrices ! Le magazine se plaint par contre de la faible endurance sur circuit des pneus, pourtant ici en version Corsa.
J'ai choisi quelques extraits de Auto Motor und Sport se focalisant sur les défauts de la voiture, à savoir pas mals de détails de "finition" : aiguille du compteur qui tremble, boutons de la transmission qui s'engagent mal, ventilation bruyante, multimedia catastrophique et dont l'écran est illisible en plein soleil...