General information

Job Title
Principal Engineer - Metallic Structures
Ref #
Monday, May 15, 2023
United Kingdom
Business area
Body and Chassis - Body In White
Position level
F - Principal / Senior
Working time
Full Time
Contract type
Working pattern
9am - 6pm Monday to Friday

Description & Requirements


No restraints. No limitations. We don’t simply push boundaries. We completely rethink them. McLaren Automotive exists to create breath-taking performance road cars.

With innovation at the core of all we do, every challenge starts with the same question. How can we do it better? This restless spirit runs right through McLaren Automotive. And the search for perfection is evident in everything we do.

Purpose of Role

Lead the design and engineering of a specific set of metallic structures components across all McLaren Automotive vehicle lines and projects.  Ensuring the systems and components you are responsible for are delivered robustly via McLaren Development Process {MDP] together with all applicable attributes; Passive Safety, Weight, NVH and Quality of Design.  All areas to be delivered on time and budget. The scope of the role covers all projects from R&D stage to series production and vehicles in the field.

The Principal Engineer is a true technical leader and expert in their area of responsibility. You will work within a matrix organization with direct report line to the Body Structures Engineering Manager whilst delivering towards project based goals set by Vehicle Line management leaders on multiple parallel projects.

Principal Accountabilities

  • Line Manage a team of technical experts in their field (Project Engineers, Design Engineers).
  • Lead your team to deliver all systems in line with targets, KPI’s and milestones set by the MDP and Vehicle Line management leaders, on multiple vehicle programmes.
  • Achieve required standards on Design and Engineering integrity to exceed quality, performance and commercial goals.
  • Lead and develop your team’s capabilities and performance to meet and exceed the current and future challenges set by the business.
  • Working closely with Vehicle line and Body Engineering leadership and other relevant stakeholders support the definition and implementation of all goals for all projects/systems under your responsibility (i.e. HLP, ETRS, budget, BOM, Spec book)
  • Achieve the BOM cost target on all systems you are responsible for.
  • Achieve the Investment Budget - including internal and outsourced labour, tooling costs and supplier or internal D&D investment.
  • Deliver Technical Specifications, DVPs, DFMEAs for all systems you are responsible of and in line with McLaren and VCA standards.
  • Innovation – Define future component and system technical strategies and associated technologies roadmaps. Identify research topics, associated budgets, resource, partners and funding streams, where necessary.
  • Contain Quality Concerns [QCRs] within 24 hour.
  • Solve/Close QCRs promptly and in line with McLaren Quality Concern Management system [PPS] including a robust understanding and dissemination of lesson learnt that are aimed at avoiding problem repetition and continuous improvement
  • Maximize the technical and project management capabilities of your staff to make sure every member of the team is a technical expert in his/her field with excellent project delivery skills.
  • Maximize your performance and development as an individual as well as that of all individuals within your team.
  • Develop the relationship, framework and ultimately the capability of your strategic outsourced resource partners including a clear performance management process.
  • Promote, implement and support a Simultaneous approach to Body Styling, Design and Engineering where early engagement from all stakeholders is maximised in order to avoid late changes and delays in the overall process. This is including internal stakeholders like Quality, Manufacturing Engineering, other Vehicle Engineering teams, Service/After sales, Marketing, etc. and external stakeholders like suppliers, outsourced resource partners, etc.
  • Develop a high level of technical competence within the in-house team in order to provide a significant and immediate DFM support to the design process without necessarily relying on suppliers
  • Support the supplier nomination strategy to deliver prompt and accurate DFM input into the design process to achieve RFT releases and to avoid styling process delays. 
Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • A leader of direct and indirect teams
  • Experienced in an OEM or tier one with a high level of Body Structures systems technical knowledge, particularly in field of Metallic Structures
  • Experience on a wide range of systems and components such as crash structures, monocoques, subframes, and other vehicle structures
  • Knowledge of metallic structures manufacturing technologies
    • Castings (sand, gravity die, high/low pressure die)
    • Extrusions
    • Fabrications
    • Pressings
  • Knowledge of structures joining technologies
    • Bolted joints
    • Welding
    • Rivetting
    • Bonding
  • Experience with cost estimation and engineering of metallic strucure parts
  • Proven ability in delivery project management within an APQP or similar framework
  • Good level of experience in automotive design and development function
  • Experience of high volume and niche vehicle (low volume) programmes
  • Relevant Experience in Lightweight Body Design and materials technology
  • CATIA V5, PC literate and at ease with MS Office products
  • Knowledge of DFMEA and its application in automotive environment
  • Knowledge of GD&T
  • Knowledge of Body Engineering Simulation and Analysis tools and processes
  • Sound commercial and financial awareness
  • Educated to Degree level in Mechanical or Automotive Engineering
Personal Attributes

  • An excellent communicator with the ability to lead and motivate teams and work cross functionally.
  • Adopts a creative & thoughtful approach to concept design and solving engineering problems with good attention to detail and an engaging mind, open to new problems outside their normal comfort zone.
  • A confident, engaging communicator able to influence and lead high level meetings
  • A natural mentor and coach who values personal relationships across the whole business
  • Well organised and delivery focused – with demonstrable track record of on-time delivery in a high-pressure environment