Kevin Magnussen, Jenson Button, Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren MP4-29, 2014

McLaren MP4-29: First pictures

2014 F1 cars

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McLaren has presented its new car for the 2014 Formula 1 season, the MP4-29.

Having been championship contenders in 2012, the team endured a win-less season last year. Jenson Button remains with them for a fifth season but has a new team mate.

Kevin Magnussen will make his grand prix debut for McLaren this year. He will be the first rookie to drive for the team since Lewis Hamilton seven years ago.

The MP4-29 has been built to F1’s new regulations which include a switch to all-new V6 hybrid turbo power units. McLaren will continue to use Mercedes engine this year.

“We’ve never had such significant new regulations before,” said their managing director Jonathan Neale. “Reacting to them, and managing those changes, while still pushing the performance limits, has been an extremely tough job.”

Neale said the team have taken a “pragmatic” approach to the new regulations. “We know that the need for consistency initially outweighs the need for performance – the winter tests won’t be about chasing set-up or refining the car; the envelope of performance is likely to be so wide, and so relatively unknown, that the winter – and to some extent the opening races – will be about understanding the operational boundaries of the car as best we can.”

“This year, more than ever, will come down to a development race,” he added. “I don’t necessarily think you can expect the car that wins the opening race to be the car that leads the championship charge, something we’ve often seen in the past.”

“No, it will be all about a team’s ability to react and respond. We already have an update package that we’re readying for race one, and we’re discovering new things in the [wind] tunnel, or in CFD, all the time. Once we start track testing, I think you’ll see an intense throughput of ideas and concepts – that’s the nitty-gritty that will win or lose the world championship.”

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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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198 comments on “McLaren MP4-29: First pictures”

  1. Damn, thats fugly

    1. It’s hideous! Oh boy I can’t help but laugh.

      1. The thing is: 4 grey ‘Mercedes’ in the field, this year? Hpefully they all won’t wear yellow helmets!

        1. Nico posted on twitter yesterday. His helmet is black.

    2. That really does look like a one eyed snake.

      1. @dphect The slot on the tip doesn’t help.

        1. Are they really gonna race with the MP4-29 logos? Writing Jenson and Kevin (like they did with Kimi in the old days) would be much better!

          1. No, they’re waiting to sign a main sponsor. That might mean the livery changing significantly too (I hope).

          2. I think they’re waiting to sign a title sponsor. I was thinking Durex would be appropriate.. due to the fact that they are a global brand with a history in the sport of course.

        2. I definitely wouldn’t be kissing the nose if I won a race in it

        3. At least the slot isn’t vertical.

          1. It’s amazing how they have managed to design something that looks both like a middle finger and a ……. at the same time.
            Overall I like it, and from the side it looks beautiful, if it would put some pants on it would look good from the front as well.
            But ultimately a fast car is a beautiful one, and thats not just a saying, for me that definitely is the case, that when a car is fast or slow the esthetic perception of the car changes. So it is how fast the car will be that will dictate how beautiful it is in my eyes.

        4. It looks like it is trying to tell us something… like – many snouts will be broken in anger.

    3. agree ugly as hell…

    4. I thought they said they wanted to identify themselves and differ from Mercedes. Well…that certainly hasn’t happened.

    5. I have to agree. It looks like the merc.

    6. petebaldwin (@)
      24th January 2014, 12:14

      What’s really gutting is that if you cover the **** up, it’s actually a really beautiful car. The livery must just be a launch one. They won’t go for something so boring and similar to Mercedes to actually race in surely? McLaren have always been so stylish but this is just so dull!

      1. The Blade Runner (@)
        24th January 2014, 12:21

        I hope you’re right re: the livery.

        It looks like it needs “WEST” on the side of it!

        1. Rats…I really don’t mind the Williams solution and was hoping more would be like that. This looks terrible, as does the Lotus. I don’t mind the looks of the cars from the side, but…hopefully we’ll get used to this over time, but I’m getting less and less sure of that with each nose we see as they get revealed.

      1. Yay, another Proboscis Monkey picture…

    7. Would it be so difficult to make it like this?

      Also, I’d like to hear what Ron has to say about his new car’s looks.

      1. Aerodynamic gains under the nose probably.

    8. I like the new designs. Granted they look a bit awkward but the stepped noses bothered me more.

    9. @vonhoff from the side it looks absolutely magnificient ! it’s oooooooooonly that nose tip that oh so ruins every other point of view.

    10. can we officially brand them “penis cars” already?

    11. This would be an improvement on the current livery, in my opinion. It just looks too much like a Mercedes at the moment.

  2. i want to throw up

    1. So ugly. After Williams CAD pictures I was a bit more optimistic now this… oh my!

      btw, where’s the orange livery?

      1. Livery looks horrific. It was fine with the Vodafone colours on, but now it is just bland.

    2. Please. Make. Them. Stop. The. Horror.

  3. Grey can be an excellent shade. You can have warm and cool ones, they can be deep or airy…

    But McLaren have gone for the most middle-of-the-road, bog-standard dull grey. So sad.

    1. So boring. Not ugly, but so so boring.

    2. The Blade Runner (@)
      24th January 2014, 12:06

      It’s the same “chrome” coulour as in previous years isn’t it?!

      I think the lack of Vodafone colour makes it appear darker thank it actually is.

      1. And the black wings accentuate it. I think you’re right.

        1. The Blade Runner (@)
          24th January 2014, 12:39

          Actually, with the black and chrome look being prevalent on the car maybe the Sony predictions were correct as per this photo

          1. that sony livery looks 100% better than the launch livery

    3. @ ajokay – they’ve gone for the “Ron Dennis OCD” grey.

    4. Ron Dennis-gray. Fitting

      1. I think the lack of Vodafone colour makes it appear darker thank it actually is.

        Speaking of Vodafone, is it just me or does this McLaren barely have any sponsors at all on it? I mean, the name of the livery is on the sidepod, where typically the title sponsor is located.

        1. Not just you. Remember though, this is just the launch. There are two months until the first race.

  4. ‘Don’t mention the nostrils, don’t mention the nostrils, don’t mention the nostrils…’

    1. Oh god why….

    2. On first sight it looked like a Mercedes with a bad cold!

      1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
        24th January 2014, 15:21

        Hahaha, I like that

  5. Mikkel Sørensen (@)
    24th January 2014, 11:57

    Oh my God. Not pretty.

  6. Not sure if badass or fugly as hell…

  7. Savage! And hurray for black wings!

    1. @andae23

      hurray for black wings!

      True, they do look good. But it took a while before I noticed them…

  8. It’s weird but I quite like it – or at least more than the previous models and models we’ve seen.

  9. It is like watching a black n white movie :/

  10. Looks like they indeed stuck to the pullrod at the front. Interesting that – I think – Force India adoped it as well.

    1. Nope, I misjudged it.

    2. I knew they would ditch the pulllrod suspension!
      Like I said months ago, the low chassis makes the pushrod a better option, now let’s see if Ferrari also make the switch.

      1. Pretty sure I read an article saying that Ferrari were definitely sticking with pullrod. Cannot remember where though, sorry.

    3. Absolutely back to push rod design – agree the question is will Ferrari follow? If they stick with it, they certainly haven’t learned anything from their inability to tune their cars. Even more of an issue in 2014 given the increased attention in the practice sessions to the “power train” setup… Can’t wait to see Kimi loose his temper when the car drives like crap…should be entertaining!

    4. Ferrari ditch pull rods and go back to push rod front suspension according to the Marco debut article

    5. To be fair I didn’t understand why any of the teams tried pull-rod front in the first place. Ferrari proved in 2012 it was difficult, McLaren reinforced that in 2013 and Red Bull in the meantime ran away with it…with push-rod front suspension.

  11. i hope Ferrari do a better job unlikely though


  13. The nose is as expected, please everyone stop complaining now.. We know they may look like this…

  14. It just looks unfinished. The lack of main sponsor gives the impression of it being a “poor car” if that makes sense. It reminds me of the HRT, which is never a good thing. Such a shame Mclaren as usually their cards look pretty good.

    1. Reminds me of Sauber 2 years back. Including the horribly boring white with light gray team ware.

  15. These new cars and their new noses are far to phallic of my liking but this is the worst one so far.

    1. It’s a real problem from a merchandise point of view. I used have Formula 1 matchbox toys and Scalelextric cars as a child. Whoever would buy their child a modern F1 toy when they look like that?

  16. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    24th January 2014, 12:01

    Aside from the ‘dripping-snot’ nose, it looks decent.

    Seriously, has there been a regulation that says they have to have these disgusting nose cones? Can’t they just gradually become narrower, rather than just having this bulbous blob of cack drooping off the front of their car?

    1. The rules just mandate a minimum cross section (which is quite small) for the nose beyond a certain point. This is why we see the anteater nose extensions – they’re as small as possible to maximise airflow beneath the car.

  17. From above it look like it’s giving you the finger. I assume this is just a launch livery? Although I like the black wings, it seems silly going for such a similar colour as Mercedes.

    1. @matt90
      I don’t think the colour is any different to the chrome they have had for quite some time now.
      Chrome is entirely dependent on surrounding colours that it can reflect and since the MTC has practically no colours what so ever, it is going to look grey and dull.

  18. The anteater nose even has a mouth!

  19. That is absolutely horrendous. These noses are absolutely ridiculous. Even worse than step-noses.

  20. I didn’t think you were allowed any bodywork forward of the front wing?

  21. It looks agressive and I like it. The first 2012 car to be reveiled, the Caterham, was MUCH worse to me. I don’t mind this one.

  22. I think it looks badass. It’s different and I really like it. Mclaren clearly having a much bigger penis than Williams.

  23. petebaldwin (@)
    24th January 2014, 12:03

    HAHAHA!!! WHAT!? Ok so I was right yesterday then when people were saying the new regs werent as bad as they thought having seen 1 car and I suggested to wait until we see the rest. I don’t even know what to say about the front end of that. It’s.. well… umm… hahahaha!!!!!!

  24. is it just me or are the sidepods MASSIVE ?

    1. They are massive. They will hold not only radiators as usual but also the intercooler (for the turbo-compressed air).

  25. The nose was expected so better get used to it guys. As far as I am concerned, I quite like it!

  26. It looks like the thing which crawls from under my bed every night. Now I’m afraid Red Bull’s gonna have wings and teeth.

  27. I kinda like it, with the narrower front wing, the car looks less like a vacuum cleaner than the 2009-2013 cars. They should reduce the width of the front wing even further and increase the width of the rear wing.

    If they could sort that nose out for 2015, we’ll really have a beautiful car!

    Sad they didn’t go for an orange livery though.

  28. That nose looks horrendous. As far as the livery goes, this video sums up my feeling of it.

  29. That looks… Vile… Doesn’t mean it will be slow though!

  30. I actually quite like it. I think the way the wing supports merge into the nose make for an interesting approach. The other teams appear to have added the anteater nose in as a sort of mandatory afterthought, almost as if they are treating it as a separate piece. The MP4-29 looks like the nose assembly is all one piece, which has the unusual arch shape to the wing support. Looks like there is going to be planted of space for air to get in under the car.

  31. They should have added a second colour. Red or orange.

  32. Why does it have to erm stick up so much!

  33. Anybody thinking of a pipefish?

  34. ‘Ohh god its ugly’ really who cares??

    Just hope they’ve produced a car capable of taking the fight to the top this year and be much better compared to 2013.

    1. @blacksimus

      ‘Ohh god its ugly’ really who cares??

      I think most of us do actually.

  35. I think it looks awesome! Far better than I was expecting. And the colour scheme looks dangerous!

    love it!

  36. It looks weird, but kind of cool. It ain’t pretty though!

  37. It’s ugly… and i imagine when the head of the pilot will be there that thing in the front will just look like…. I just laughed so hard :)

  38. Considering the rule change, I like it.. much better looking than the Lotus!

    1. it’s the birds-eye view that kills it..

  39. I couldn’t disagree with the general sentiment more, I think it looks awesome

  40. Livery improvement but those drivers look ridiculous up there.

  41. *sigh*

  42. It reminds me of those USF1 pictures where they had a truck-grill.


  43. Got to feel sorry for the guy on the front jack this year.

    1. he’ll be a soprano in no time

  44. I reckon it looks pretty good. Shame the livery isn’t a little bit more creative, but the car itself seems to be a total departure from what McLaren have done since 2009. Looks more like the McLarens of old. Still, who cares what it looks like, the big question is – is it fast?

  45. Oh dear… that nose… reminds me of something…

    Am I wrong, people? It’s the McLaren-Kilroy! ;-)

  46. not as cute as Hello Kitty, dat for sure.
    Me need to see it from da side though…

  47. akilly, not bad considering mindless rules and all…

  48. Large air intakes both the top and side ones, strange nose but in my view much better than any type of stepped nose.

  49. Scary front wing, pointy nose
    Alien look and bigger holes

  50. Livery-wise it looks really good, apart from the red logos on top of the sidepods. But.. dat nose..

  51. I have to admit, I love the livery. There’s something about it that just works. Probably it’s minimalist look to it. It looks ferocious. And the black wings are a yes as well.

    But the nose… I mean…

    1. what livery…..? You mean that can of battleship paint that was left from WW II ?

  52. It’s actually good that they have a pointer in the nose so they now which direction is forward.

  53. Don’t forget that the side views of these cars we have seen so far are pretty cool. A minor adjustment to the front and they will be really cool looking.

  54. The Blade Runner (@)
    24th January 2014, 12:26

    If you look at it from this angle it’s awesome (apart from that “nose”!!!) I can’t imagine that they’ll race with MP4-29 all over it.

  55. i mean in the history of the sport, why does it have to stick up so much in front of the nose, that’s what making it ugly as hell….!!!!

  56. Man, – bring Ron in as quickly as possible! Something has to be done with their design.

  57. Looks like that nose was designed by Ann Summers.

    On a more serious note where are the Santander logos?. I know they’ve only just announced the continuation of the sponsorship but I would’ve thought they had enough time to put some stickers on the car…..or was the deal close to collapse?

    1. There haven’t been Santander logos on the McLarens since they’ve been on the Ferraris, so from 2010. They were only the rear wings from 2007-2009.

  58. I must be the only one that likes:
    a) The lack of red – I think the livery is quite nice! Mercedes ruin their livery with that tacky green
    b) The shape! (Bar the ugly nose, of course…)

  59. I think we will get used to the noses as the season will go on. We won´t do anything with that.. If everyone is using almost the same concept (at least so far it looks like that), then there is a reason to it.

    a decently looking car.. curious about the other ones

  60. From the front it looks almost like the air intake of a turbine. Time for jet engines again!

  61. Alex McFarlane
    24th January 2014, 12:52

    A head on collision between this and the lotus could be interesting. Maybe mclaren and lotus could have their cars go slowly backwards and forwards nose to nose as a party trick

    1. one of them will get pregnant

      1. lol…it that case it ll be the Lotus

        1. petebaldwin (@)
          24th January 2014, 16:54

          Yeah we’ll end up with little McLotus karts.

          1. Oww, how cute!

  62. Ok…I can’t unsee that…ever…

    But after inspecting all images , it actually looks ok, especialy like the rear end, but full-frontal view is hidious!

  63. The rear wing looks ridiculously tiny! The nose looks stupid but in a good way. And why is it silver? It’s time they ditched the Merc connection, I was hoping for the classic orange for the unveiling at least.

  64. the McLaren and the Lotus can literally make love….. ;-)

    1. this will be a strange f1 season

    2. Some shunts may be X-rated this year.

      1. Tempting for the pit girls..

  65. I find these new noses hideous, and whenever I look at them I just sit thinking of every possible way to just remove them from the cars. But I guess I have to convince myself that they’re not going anywhere and get used to them…

    1. looks like an appendix

  66. McLaren will win this year.
    What will happen is this. When the car ahead sees the McLaren in his rear view mirror, he will laugh so hard that he will drive off the track.

  67. Awww it just looks so sad :(

  68. If you raise your arm and cover the ‘finger’ with your thumb, it starts to look like a really pretty car. But then, unfortunately, your arm gets tired after a while.

    Which also leads me to another problem, I don’t have 22 thumbs or fast enough reflexes to cover every cars nose whilst watching a race on TV :(

  69. I don’t think the nose is that ugly. If anything it is interesting as to see the different interpretations of the nose regulations by the different teams. We will get used to it soon enough. What worries me is the lack of sponsorship on that car and the drivers overalls.

  70. Hope its better than it looks

  71. PEEEEEEEEENISSSSS!!!! Just saying what I see.
    Always thought cars were like ships and were referred to as females until McLaren let it all hang out…

    1. I think F1 is trying to attract more women to the sport with the tip of the head of the car. It must be bernie secret plan

      1. or maybe they want Mr Bean to drive one of those cars

  72. If the Red Bull design is similar, Vettel probably stops naming his car after a female, more like “naughty Wolfgang” :)

  73. These cars are so age-inappropriate.

    First they have these inappropriate extensions on their noses that look suspiciously like oh well.. and then at the rear, they all have a single exhaust hole.

    Its like, one could fix every 2014 car to the other and they could all form a straight line.

  74. had the slot in the nose been vertical and painted red like last year’s car, it wouldn’t have been called the anteater nose!!!

  75. I have seen this nose before. It’s from Squidward Tentacles .

  76. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    24th January 2014, 14:50

    This year, the best photos will DEFINITELY be of the rear. The high-res photo is practically NSFW :P

  77. McLaren seems like they were “hard” at work when building this car!
    Oh man… I definitely like the profile shots and not so much the front ones! LMAO!!

    1. now we know that F1 cars are boys. next year they add the balls..

  78. I hadn’t had my morning coffee yet, and I thought for a couple of minutes I was looking at a Mercedes unveiling. I knew something was wrong, but I couldn’t figure out what… until now.

    1. too much sugar in the coffee?

  79. Whats up with the twin extensions either side of the air intake and flaring up near the central exhaust?

    1. I also wondered this… Looks like a beam wing-like structure but I’m not sure.
      Also, anyone notice the RB9 like tea tray stay?

  80. Its gonna be funny watching the front wing changes this year. I wonder if they will use the *** as grab points.

  81. Hah! Jenson looks like a teacher with two students

  82. I hope with the help of upgrade packages that the engineers will make the cars ******** before the end of the season.

  83. There is something bizarre at the rear wing. They’ve mounted a fixed outlet under the wing to influence DRS opening or something like that. Is that legal?

  84. I remember when I used to use F1 car launches to change my desktop background.

  85. Well, I think it’s just lovely that McLaren are paying tribute to one of their legendary drivers with this car.

    …This car is inspired by James Hunt, right?

  86. McLaren shall dub the MP4-29 the “Dodger Todger”

  87. There must have been a collective gasp of horror when the covers came of that. McLaren opting for the most boring shade of grey in the range.

    1. Well that didn’t work. Was trying to post a link.

  88. I am pleasantly surprised by its shape.
    Even though I had hoped for “McLaren Orange,” I don’t mind the minimalist livery.
    From what I’ve seen so far, these cars are a step (back) in the right direction.

  89. Am I the only one who thinks that it looks aweome? At least it’s better than duck noses.

  90. Its a Ron penn!$ Car!!
    Good job.

  91. These are not photos they are fake “shots” look at the car with the three drivers then you can see it is a photo-shop badly done joke by them.
    This is not the actual car and launch
    It is a joke
    Only done by McLaren Mercedes
    No wonder they did not do a live release.
    Wonder if the car is truly finished as they say.

  92. Just like with nearly all recent McLarens, it’s a beautiful car, but the nose of course. The airbox is wonderful, the livery is great (but too similar to the Mercedes), the driver suits are also fantastic.
    PS: where’s Paffett?

  93. By playing with the colours the new McLaren look much better
    Here is a link have a look at it:)

    1. Wow, that looks like a different car! Nice.

    2. @bbbalazs Sorry, doesn’t do it for me. If anything it draws more attention to the horrible nose.

    3. The Blade Runner (@)
      25th January 2014, 17:25

      I agree with Keith.

      I think we’re going to have to put aesthetics to one side for the time being and accept that for the foreseeable future F1 cars will be, er, quirky

  94. I hate these new rules. Last years noses were bad enough but now we have anteaters all over the grid. This is terrible…

    1. almost like indycars

  95. They put the Mercedes logo on the “thing”. Is there a subliminal message here?

  96. I guess I’m in the minority, but I like it. Very futuristic looking.

  97. I’m not quite sure what you guys are on about.

    If the stub of a nose would be “cut” it would really beautiful. And it existing alone doesn’t make the car hideous.

  98. I kinda like it, especially the engine cover and side pods. The air intakes remind me of F1 around 2006, which isn’t a bad thing.

  99. looks awesome! space age car, totally different to what we’ve seen before, finally something a bit more advanced than a standard internal combustion 100+year old technology engine!

    I love innovations in aero and this is a good example of it… we will get used to the weirdness of it…

    and no sponsor, surely they are just biding time this year waiting for all the lucrative benefits the Honda tie in will have next year, probably have big sponsors waiting in the wings for next year and at the moment just seeing which of the existing partners wants to up the $$ to get prime spot on this new beauty! won’t matter to them if it wins or not its McLaren! win or lose it **** loads of publicity!

    go McLaren!

  100. Did you see, that the tires are Made in Turkey. I would not buy my car tires from turkey. No wonder they blew up.

  101. I like low slung front ends far nicer, but the nose tips are not great, although this is more elegant than the awful Lotus.

    They ain’t going to sell much merchandise this year, that livery is so bland, I don’t get why they are keeping grey when it just looks like a Merc? Why would they do that?!

    The only reason I can think of is to confuse Hamilton into driving it.

    1. The Blade Runner (@)
      25th January 2014, 17:26

      It’s chrome as previously!

  102. From the front ….. its a praying mantis.

  103. Has anyone else noticed the nose looks like a knob?

  104. soundscape (@)
    24th January 2014, 23:14

    I find it interesting how often I disagree with the F1 Fanatic comment crowd on aesthetics. :P
    This car to me looks bold and quite incredible – and I much prefer it to the Lotus. The only issue for me is the livery, but it doesn’t look to be the final paint job (starkly lacking in sponsors, including Vodafone).

  105. It’s a beautiful car!

  106. Was expecting much worse. But what a beautiful car. People complain too much. If F1 cars looked the same all the time it would be boring too.

  107. Houston, we got a problem.

  108. I like it! I think it looks slick.

  109. I love it. And, I like more McLaren’s attitude. Here we are. This is us. We are ready. Lets do this. Unlike Red Bull who hides, complains when things don’t go their way, secretive, cheeky and, sorry to say, boring.
    Welcome back, Mr. Ron Denis-Cojones.

  110. When you look at the car from the front, does anybody see a goats head?

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