McLaren is the first team to unveil its 2021 car. The Mercedes-powered MCL35M was launched on Monday evening by Lando Norris and newcomer Daniel Ricciardo.
The name of the car is a sign of the further development of the MCL35 from last year, as a large part of the chassis is part of a cost-cutting measure Frozen amid the COVID-19 pandemic. However, due to the switch from McLaren to Mercedes performance – hence the additional « M » in the name – the team believes that it has the most diverse car on the grid compared to its competitors.
The MCL35M is the first car to which gives a glimpse of the changes that were required to the rear of the 2021 cars. The technical regulations in this area have been changed to reduce downforce. Under the similar papaya and blue paintwork as its predecessor, Technical Director James Key says the car has many architectural differences, some of which were slightly restrictive.
« Many of the components involved in the engine installation were at the beginning of the frozen last season when it actually started, « Key said. “Of course that brought us to our knees a bit, but of course there were allowances.
“ That meant that we had to do a completely different installation. Each installation is really very different – there is no single solution for arranging these units. The size of the various components can affect the vehicle architecture. So we had to try to respect the homologation process by not changing things that didn’t have to change in line with the installation of the engine, but making the necessary changes clearly to homologated parts.
“So we could change the chassis which of course has to be changed with a new motor and energy storage system. Aspects of the gearbox (changed) for packaging purposes, but after that everything is the same as last year. The electrical system is completely different; The cooling system, of course, will be largely homologated this year. The cooling systems are also completely different.
“Basically, the architecture of the car is completely different, but the homologated areas of the car that we had to stick to are as untouched as possible. Along with all of the other challenges in trying to achieve this, an extra dimension has been added that has been shown to result in a slightly sub-optimal approach compared to what you do when completely free. But I don’t think it was such a compromise. «
The car will make its first appearance on Tuesday at a shakedown at Silverstone, where both Ricciardo and Norris are scheduled to drive, and the Australian says it took a long time to officially work with his new team.
« It’s great to finally join the team after a period of confirmation last May, » said Ricciardo. « I’m excited to be a McLaren driver and very keen to get started. McLaren has been on a great journey over the past few years and I look forward to helping the team maintain this positive dynamic.
« I’ve spent the last few weeks here in the UK to fully integrate with the team so that we are as well prepared as possible for the start of the season. » I got such a warm welcome from everyone I met and there is a real sense of oneness and focus in the factory and a lot of excitement! «
While studying sports journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, Chris made his way to the 2008 British Grand Prix and stayed for three years before moving to ESPN F1 as Assistant Editor. After three years at ESPN, after a time as F1 editor at Crash Media Group, the main task was to start the English language website of F1i.com and to run it as editor.
Present at every race since the beginning of 2014, he has further expanded his freelance portfolio and worked with international titles. In addition to writing for RACER, he also works for BBC 5Live and Sky Sports in the UK, as well as titles in Japan and the Middle East.
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