Despite knowing that late aerodynamic developments are useless in perspective to 2009, McLaren have brought some interesting changes to Brazil. Most important is the new rear wing, specifically developed for this circuit. At both sides, the rear wing has upward curves, and while that in itself is not very new, the upper plane follows the same curve and extends to the leading edge of the end plates. While this is hard to explain without detailed CFD analyses, the new shape is most li... Read more
Formula One car development blog
McLaren have introduced yet another step to its car, this time by changing the sidepod panel. After its initial, small shape at the time of the launch, the team quickly stretched the element - Monza spec in lower part of the image - to make use of it for most of the season. Other temporary developments were used for specific circuits, and it looks like Singapore's high downforce requirements made room for another elongation. McLaren added approximately 10cm to the item to modify air... Read more
Well it's more like 6.5, as Mclaren have added an extension in the central part of the main front wing panel. It also features a small gap similar to what BMW Sauber's front wing featured on several occasions this year. McLaren ran this wing only in combination with the new dumbo wings. On Friday, the cars were still fitted with the more conventional one.
Compared to the previous wing on top, you can clearly see the added surface on the high downforce version. Because of these chara... Read more
As of Saturday morning, the McLaren team has modified its cars to run with the new dumbo wings that the team designed. This version is a mix of what was seen previously as it copies the longer wing base of BMW while having similar dimensions to Honda's wings. Interestingly, it does not feature end plates which would be good to reduce wing-tip vortices. The team did however found a solution to that as - marked in the image - the tips are rounded for a smooth transition of the air aro... Read more
McLaren have recently been using steering wheels with 4 paddles, rather than the usual two. The 'telegraph' have reported that, while the upper paddles are used for conventional up and downshifting, the additional levers allow the driver to select a different engine mapping, independently from the gear shifting.
The currently used standard engine control unit enable to teams to program a number of predefined engine mappings, optimising traction or driveability in different condition... Read more
McLaren have found the best way possible to reduce drag; just cover up the sidepod inlets. Much of the drag is causes by these inlets, which is why teams try to make them as small as possible, just big enough for cooling. McLaren have either found a very efficient way to provide engine cooling or have decreased the engine's need to be cooled down as the lower half of the air inlet of the right sidepod has been covered up. Previously the change was first seen at the most recent Silve... Read more
It just appears like every other week a team introduces its own shark fin engine cover, named by McLaren as a "top body dorsal fin". What's in a name. Needless to say, the item works similar as with Red Bull and its copycats, helping to maintain the car's stability while cornering. The rear cut-out around the rear wing's leading edge is at the same time preventing that the rear wing's efficiency would decrease when the car is in considerable yaw.
It's now a waiting game to see when ... Read more
McLaren have taken front wing development to yet another level again. After having used a triple element front wing for several years, first the team introduced a bridge wing that was recently split up in two elements at the outer sides. At Silverstone however, the MP4-23 featured 4 panels - two grey and two red. The complexity is in stark contrast with the front wing of Force India, having only 2 base panels and simple nose-connected deck wings.
McLaren have finally jumped into Renault's and Ferrari's footsteps by adding little winglets at each side of the cockpit. The idea was already introduced in 2006 by Honda but back then in the form of a thicker element. Renault then also started using it in 2006 while Ferrari introduced their 'knives' earlier this year. All designs are some kind of a lift generating aerofoil ahead of the mirrors to direct a little extra airflow into the sidepod inlets. Its effects are highly unpredic... Read more
McLaren have added some changes in the rear wing area in order to improve the downforce to drag ratio. While the principle is already well known and currently also used by BMW Sauber, McLaren have implemented it creatively by connecting the lower element of the rear wing to the shark fin on the rear crash structure. The winglet helps to add downforce in the small zone where aerofoils are still permitted by the regulations. Additionally, the end plate was developed with a small stabi... Read more