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McLaren confirm ‘real’ launch car will be used at testing

McLaren Technical Director James Key insists the team’s launch car is “real” and will appear largely that way at the opening first pre-season test.

F1’s launch season has so far caused intrigue, with Aston Martin the first team to showcase a full 2022 design after Haas released renders and Red Bull seemingly painting their usual livery onto a show car.

McLaren, having launched their MCL36 on Friday night, have followed Aston Martin’s lead, with Key saying the team felt “proud” to be presenting a genuine car, albeit with certain “sensitive areas” covered up.

McLaren present “real” car that will be used at first test

Speaking at the launch of the car, Key stressed that no major changes will be made before the opening pre-season test gets underway in Barcelona on 23 February.

“I think we can be proud of presenting a real car, because it absolutely is – it’s the car we’ll be taking to Barcelona,” Key told media, including RacingNews365.com, at McLaren’s headquarters in Woking.

“Yes, we’ve hidden a few bits and pieces for obvious reasons; there are some sensitive areas [on the car].

“As far as the development plan is concerned, like every team, I’m sure, we have development steps to come early on, because we’re still very much in a learning process at this stage.

“We’ll be bringing some updates to [the first race in] Bahrain. You’ll see the car change, but I’m sure everyone’s car is going to change.”

McLaren planning shakedown before Barcelona session

McLaren team boss Andrea Seidl confirmed that there are plans for the MCL36 to be shaken down ahead of the first test, though stopped short of specifying when and where.

“We still have some challenges ahead of us in order to make sure we have everything ready for the for the filming day, shortly before we go into the official testing Barcelona,” admitted Seidl of the team’s pre-season plans.

“But so far, I’m very happy with what say the progress of the project and it was a great moment today for the entire team to see the car, together and fully finished.

“Now we will keep working through the open points still on the job list and then look forward to get going again, finally!”

With huge changes being made to the F1 rule book for 2022, our journalists Dieter Rencken, Mike Seymour and Thomas Maher look ahead to the new season.


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