Formula One car development blog

New front wing for McLaren at USA

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McLaren have made a fairly major change in front wing design with their newest iteration introduced at the American GP in Austin. The new design drops a few McLaren-only styling elements, such as the sharp steps in the wing's main plane, as well as removing the r-winglet.

Generally speaking, the new design, and particularly the items that were changed appear to be inspired on Lotus F1's front wing. Therefore, the new wing features curves in the main plane, leading to a very differen... Read more

McLaren tweaks downwash wing

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Although subtle, McLaren have introduced a minor change on the car. The winglet, just above the radiator air inlet, is effectively a connection between the sidepod panel and the monocoque.

The new winglet is a positioned a little higher above the sidepod aims to control airflow just above the sidepod, a crucial area to ensure efficiency of the downwash exhaust.

McLaren's low downforce wing packages

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McLaren have run two interesting wing packages at both Spa and then Monza, two circuits known for their high speed straights, with Spa adding a high number of medium speed corners to the mix.

At the Belgian GP, McLaren had a medium downforce rear wing ready for both drivers, but only Jenson Button decided to use it - and he went on to win the Grand Prix with ease. The rear wing featured an upward curve on the leading edge of the wing, causing a lower pressure difference between the ... Read more

McLaren rethinks sidepod design

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McLaren have brought quite an interesting update to Spa as they have changed the way to tackle airflow around the top and edges of the sidepod. Previously, the car's sidepod featured a fairly traditional, vertical and solid sidepod panel. Since the Spanish GP, the leading edge of the top of the sidepods featured two or three vertical fins - as on the Lotus - to better manage airflow that will eventually end up streaming over the exhaust outlet.

This time around, McLaren ditched the ... Read more

Is McLaren now copying back from Ferrari?

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McLaren's car updates have pushed the car back up in between the front runners, and unsurprisingly, the improvement came once again from exhaust modifications. McLaren redesigned the sidepod to have the exhaust exit lower above the ground and further back, creating a more consistent flow onto the outer extremities of the diffuser.

In essence, McLaren's update appears to be influenced by Ferrari's famous acer ducts, something which the MP4-27 now features as well. The ducts are slopi... Read more

McLaren focuses on front end development

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Since their dismal Bahrain GP where the team only caught a mere few points, McLaren have introduced several new parts on its car, mainly on the front end. Team principal Martin Whitmarsh commented earlier this week that regulations are now so strict that there is often more to gain by optimizing the front in order to get more quality air to the rear of the car, rather than actually developing the rear.

Already on Friday at Barcelona, the team's car featured a new, raised nose after ... Read more