McLaren to have new car ready for first test

2012 F1 season

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McLaren MP4-26 launch, Berlin, 2011

McLaren’s 2012 F1 car will be ready for the first test of 2012, the team have confirmed.

The MP4-27 will be launched on February 1st, prior to the beginning of testing at Jerez.

McLaren have not yet confirmed where the launch will be held.

Sauber have previously confirmed their new car will be ready for the first test, but Mercedes’ W03 won’t.

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2012 F1 season

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Image © McLaren

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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39 comments on “McLaren to have new car ready for first test”

  1. So its Redbull, Ferrari, McLaren and Sauber for the first test for now. I guess Caterham might join them as well since they have already passed the crash test.

    1. Caterham is quite likely. but Mercedes is…

  2. Just curious, but isn’t the MP4-27 the name of McLaren’s new road car? I assumed they’d be naming the F1 car something different in light of that.

    1. No, that’s the MP4-12C. Very catchy name for a road car, I’m sure we can all agree.

      1. No, I mean their NEW road car, the successor/addition to the MP4-12C

        1. Nope, the successor to the MP4-12C is only known by the internal designation “P12”.

        2. maybe they plan on mass-producing there new car? (fingers crossed :))

        3. actually it’s not successor of MP4-12C. It would be different line-up from MP4-12C. P12 is supposed to be the real Mclaren F1 successor.

    2. They’ve only just released teh MP4-12C and they are already working on it’s successor?!

      1. It’s more of an upmarket “Enzo” type car designed to replace the F1 if anything, just an addition to the range rather than a successor.

      2. They’re planning on having 3 cars out:

        The MP4-12C, a hypercar (currently codenamed P12) and a 911 aimed “baby-mclaren” (currently codenamed P13)…

        …and you can bet they’re already planning the successor to the MP4-12C, that’s how car companies work…

        1. They also have new F1GT’s instock, but you must win 3 WDC with Mclaren before you can purchase!

      3. MP4-12C is Mclaren’s F430. P12 is Mclaren’s Enzo.

      4. Thats automotive for you @geemac! It takes about 2-3 years for big companies to design the car and another 6-9 months to get up to production volumes.

        Just a relatively small manufacturer like Skoda (the ones “next door” for me) currently have 1 new models that went into production this year, a further 2 for next year and they are planning on doing this rate for the next few years to keep the fresh models in.

        McLaren actually plans to have 3 cars longer term. The entry model – 150.000 MP4-12C, then the top model supercar (the P12 project, meant to be the “real” successor of the F1) and a car to slot somewhere in between.

    3. Yes you’re right. Perhaps this new F1 car is going to be the MP4-28 then?

      A little bit strange to be honest.

      1. The information from McLaren is that their next F1 car will be called the MP4-27. There’s nothing in it about their road car programme. Hence why the article is written as it is.

        1. My bad. Just a combination of rubbish journalism at autoblog and my stupidity.

          1. Look up autoblog’s clutchless shifting video on youtube as to why you should never trust ANYTHING from them. There is so much fail in that video it’s hard to believe it’s not a joke!

    4. As I understand it that was a misunderstanding on the part of some media people, who misunderstood the Next F1 cars designation, the MP4-27, to be the designation of the next road car.

      1. @Mike
        That makes much more sense. Every time I search “MP4-27”, there is only information discussing the next road-car model, but it was never very concrete or detailed. I kind of assumed it may have been a mistake, as it seemed odd that Mclaren would “skip” a model designation for their F1 car

        1. It wouldn’t have been unprecedented. The likes of Lotus and Brabham awarded model numbers sequentially, without distinuishing between racing cars of different series and road cars.

          For example, the Lotus 49 was an F1 chassis, the 50 was a four seat Elan, 51 was a Formula Ford chassis, 52 the prototype Europa, 53 an unraced sports racer, 54 the production Europa, 55 an F3 chassis and 56 was an Indycar.

          Granted, it’s probably more confusing than the system that McLaren, Red Bull, Mercedes et al currently use (although no worse than Ferrari’s, which seem to be picked almost at random), but an interesting hark back to the days when F1 teams competed across a wider ranger of categories.

          1. McLaren’s 2012 F1 car will be called the MP4-27A


          2. I doubt the ‘A’ will make it over to the finished car.

          3. @super_swede_96 now changed to just “MP4-27”. This is how it should be.

        2. All McLaren race-cars have, since the very start, carried an alphabetical suffix.

          It is used on the drawings and the chassis plates, but unless a subsequent specification car ever actually showed-up, then the identifier can and is usually dispensed with. Which is why the MP4-26 was known as that and not 26A, and why next years car is the 27.

          You need to go back to a 19B and a 17D to find its application. Before that 10B, 10C and before that a MP4/6B. They managed to get up to E on the MP4/1

          Modern F1 designs, with little carry over from previous season, and restrictive rules for homologation and crash-tests probably make a genuine B spec highly unlikely nowadays, but nothing wrong with maintaining a tradition – The first McLaren was 1966’s M2B, a development of the test car, the M2A.

          Gotta say, there does seem to be a lot of unnecessary confusion in this thread over something one would have presumed to be kinda straightforward.
          There have been an awful lot of MP4s built over the decades, and in that time the program of numerical sequencing has been reliably consistent.

  3. Chris Goldsmith
    19th December 2011, 12:38

    Man, where did 2011 go, anyway? It only seems like a few weeks ago I was watching McLaren mechanics putting together the MP4-26 in the middle of a street at its launch, and reading people on twitter saying “oooh where’s the exhaust!?”.

    Nothing ever stands still in F1..

    1. And you just know that when it hits Jerez it will have already gone various updates.

      1. *undergone

    2. That was weird and awkward. Let’s hope the whole thing works better this time around!

  4. Feb 1st. Wow. I only have to get through January before I get to see a new F1 car.

    If it’s a UK launch, and accessible, I might try and go.

  5. …… and I will be at Jerez :)

    1. and I will be at the Barcelona tests !! twice!! its amazing how lucky we are over here!
      Sounds like the right decision to have the car up and running from the very first test. last year mclaren said they didnt want to rush their preparation as they intended to collect as much data as possible, then it turned out they couldnt get together their “octopus sytem”(or whatever) and ended up just pulling a red bull like exhaust-diffuser at the last second…
      hopefully we will get to see a fiercer battle at melbourne already

      1. hopefully we will get to see a fiercer battle at melbourne already

        Well, some will, the others will get to watch highlights of it….

      2. @guidof1
        How do you get to the test at barcelona? Well I can figure out how to get there, but do you have to know Mr. Ecclestone or pay a billion trillion euros to be allowed in there or how does it work?

        1. no, unfortunately im not friends with bernie. i wish!
          you just turn up, find the ticket office and buy yours. last year it was only 15euros on saturdays and sundays, and 10euros from mon to fri. they normally start at 9 in the morning then stop at 1 for lunch and get back at 2 and run until 5pm. its cold and not too bright but it all makes a very special atmosphere. if you are lucky and teams are running reliably you get to see maybe 60 or 70 laps. its well worth it. i strongly recommend it

          1. @guidof1
            For that price it ain’t too bad.
            As it is testing do you know if there are any restrictions on camera equipment you can bring with you?

  6. Seems reasonable, considering they were almost running out of time to fix the exhaust of the MP4-26 before the season started. In case they mess something up, they have time to repair it.

  7. The new maclaren f1 car is MP4-27 and the road car will be MP4/27A this is from gineva motor show.

  8. Good. I wonder they would stick with their exotic sidepod.

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