Custom performance

mclaren mp4 12c

One of the best things about the 12C is its wonderfully flexible personality. One knob allows you set the engine and transmission for Regular, Sport or Track while another allows you to separately set the suspension systems in the same modes.

And this car feels genuinely comfortable in Street mode. The car is fast yet friendly, but you're not really getting what you're paying for, in terms of that intimate performance feel.

Flick those knobs over to Sport, though, and you find out why people would pay the starting price of roughly $270,000 for this car. It's not just because it looks fast. It's because it makes you feel so thoroughly in control of so much power.

First published November 14, 2013: 1:31 PM ET