What would have potentially been a very ordinary affair turned out to be quite the opposite, with Formula 1 stars Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button joining McLaren boss Ron Dennis in London last Monday for the launch of the automaker’s new retail network.

The two F1 champs took time to pose for photos and show off their trophies, as well as their own race cars, helping to send home the message that being part of the McLaren family is something a little bit special.

The location was the first of McLaren’s new showrooms, situated at One Hyde Park in the upmarket area of Knightsbridge. By the end of 2011, McLaren expects to have 35 bespoke retailers in 19 countries worldwide. All have been carefully selected and groomed by McLaren for the retail sale of the new MP4-12C but eventually two other models, including the successor to the legendary F1 supercar.

Since 2005 McLaren has spent more than a billion dollars establishing itself as the world’s newest sports car company, with most of that money going towards the development of the new cars but also the building of the brand itself.

McLaren eventually hopes to expand its global retail network to around 70 locations by the middle of the decade when the full range of cars is under production.