McLaren faces a huge technical challenge

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Bahrain, Bahrain International Circuitbh

The McLaren team is adamant to complete its switch from the Renault to the Mercedes power unit despite the coronavirus outbreak that has already led to a series of changes in Formula One.

The coronavirus pandemic has already forced the sport to cancel and postpone several grands prix and implement key short- und mid-term changes. Announced on Friday, the most significant move has been the delay of the technical revamp for 2021 until 2022 which has raised many questions.

Teams, the FIA and Formula One held a conference call on Thursday to discuss the coronavirus pandemic and its impacts on the sport. They decided to delay the introduction of the sweeping technical changes for 2021 until the following season, also agreeing that the chassis must be carried over into next year.

Due to the cancellations of events, teams could face a financially troubled time. Beside using the 2020 chassis next season, the governing body is working on further ways to ease the financial situation that could be caused by the loss of income. The development of aerodynamics is expected to stay free, but the research on other parts of the car could also be frozen.

The McLaren outfit announced last September its intention to part ways with its current engine partner Renault and swtich to the Mercedes power units from 2021. The delay of introduction of the 2021 technical rules has raised doubts over the possiblity of fulfilling the switch under the current situation with the two power units featuring very different architecture. However, the Woking-based squad confirmed that it sticks to the engine change which will raise an interesting challenge for its engineers due to the very different layouts of the power units.