WOKING, England — official team release — McLaren photo —
McLaren-Honda – a name that evokes memories of the past; of Ayrton Senna battling Alain Prost for supremacy; of classic red and white machines dominating for season upon season; and of an iconic team writing one of the defining chapters in the motor racing history books.
History brings with it the weight of expectation, but McLaren and Honda are working to write a fresh chapter in Formula 1, one that nods to the past but boldly looks to the future.
To that end, McLaren has revealed their 2015 car – the MP4-30 – McLaren’s first Honda-powered car in 23 years.
The car is a refined version of last year’s machine, with new technical improvements, and features a new red, black and silver color scheme that contextualizes McLaren’s brand in the 21st century.
The MP4-30 has been extensively developed over the winter, with McLaren’s restructured and strengthened engineering departments gaining the conviction to embark on a number of changes of direction. The end result is a solid, effective and practical base package allowing for a number of new exploratory development paths for the teams’s engineers, aerodynamicists and drivers to pursue during the season.
Images of the sleek new machine show a refined nose-box section (to adjust to and comply with the new FIA nose rules), slim rear-end packaging (particularly around the gearbox) and tightly contoured bodywork under which the all-new Honda RA615H Hybrid power unit lies in wait.
McLaren won eight world titles and 44 Grands Prix between 1988 and 1992 with the Japanese manufacturer, and the team is confident they can make quick and efficient progress throughout the season towards a successful future despite admitting the renewed partnership is still a “work in progress”.
“Although our renewed alliance (with Honda) began again many months ago, the launch of the McLaren-Honda MP4-30 marks the start of a lengthy journey,” said Ron Dennis, the McLaren Group’s chairman and CEO.
“We’ve come a long way already and, although there’s a lot of work to do before we can expect to repeat the level of success we enjoyed together 25-or-so years ago, it’s already clear that there’s enormous synergy and potential in our partnership, and I’m positive that, together, we’ll get to where we want to be: winning Grands Prix and eventually World Championships as McLaren-Honda.”
“We’re prepared for a steep learning curve, but it’s clear to see that inside McLaren-Honda there’s total commitment, and a real change in feeling, as we start this new partnership,” says new team driver Fernando Alonso. “We’re all focused on the challenge ahead, and I feel extremely honoured to be part of a relationship that has shared so much history together.”
“My aim is to help write a new chapter in the history of McLaren-Honda. We understand the effort and teamwork required to take McLaren-Honda back to where it should be, at the front of the grid, and all our energy as a team is focused on that goal.”