McLaren MCLExtreme

McLaren reveals ‘MCLExtreme’ vision for 2050 Formula 1

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: McLaren has revealed its latest vision for the future of Formula 1 racing, the MCLExtreme, following on from its 2015 MP4-X design.

McLaren MCLExtreme

The McLaren MCLExtreme would use active aerodynamics to maximise performance while minimising energy consumption. Its sidepods would change shape, allowing the car to reduce its drag and hit a top speed of 500kph (310mph).

The car would use electric propulsion and cutting-edge technology to recharge its batteries. In the cockpit, the driver would rely on artificial intelligence to optimise his race strategy, rather than input from the team’s pit wall. While the cockpit would be fully shrouded for protection, it would also be transparent, allowing fans to see the driver at work inside.

Here are more pictures of McLaren’s MCLExtreme concept:

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Comment of the day

@Eurobrun is hoping F1 TV’s broadcasts of pre-season testing will show the service has improved:

Its a no-brainer to do this.

They clearly need more time to test the improvements to the service before Melbourne and you simply can’t accurately simulate the demands of a live broadcast with real people watching via real data connections.

I have a feeling that Sky are only broadcasting the test because they were approached first in order to provide the coverage for F1 TV.

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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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  • 75 comments on “McLaren reveals ‘MCLExtreme’ vision for 2050 Formula 1”

    1. Lenny (@leonardodicappucino)
      24th January 2019, 7:05

      Interesting that all these “vision of the future” fantasy cars always come from the big teams that aren’t doing that well*. Ferrari made at the start of 2015, and McLaren made one at the end of the year. Ferrari were only 4th in 2014, while McLaren were down in 9th in 2015 and of course 6th last year. To cover my earlier asterisk, the only F1 concept car made by a team on a high (to my knowledge) was the Red Bull X2010, designed by Adrian Newey just at the start of Red Bull’s dominance. It seems all these cars do is give teams in a rut a chance to generate some positive publicity. I’m also still trying to figure out what’s going on with the grooved (albeit futuristically grooved) tyres, and I’m noticing how this looks more similar to a current Formula E car than a current Formula 1 car… Maybe a sign of where things are going.

      1. I thought McLaren were putting all their resources into the 2021 rule changes, but it seems they’re already focussed on 2050…
        I wonder what the odds are that they’ve still not won another title by 2050?

      2. @leonardodicappucino – the grooved tyres are so they can fit in LEDs there. Not just LEDs, futuristic blue LEDs, even!

        1. And pick up virtual candies for a power boost ;)

        2. @phylyp
          Call me a traditionalist, but I think everything was better before the colour blue was invented.

        3. Note how the 2050 Car still doesn’t have a title sponsor.
          I’d say it’ s a save bet 2050 is to be more of a transitional year for the kiwis

          1. It’s going to sponsored (and powered by) Dyson.

      3. @leonardodicappucino the main difference with the Red Bull X2010 is that car wwas actually useful, in a way, because it was build for a game and you could drive it. And it wasn’t “futuristic” (that is, using technology from the future) either, the question was what would an F1 car look like if there were no rules?

        The other stuff is just marketing material with no purpose at all… I don’t understand why they do this.

        1. @fer-no65

          They do this because we are talking about it.

      4. Lenny (@leonardodicappucino)
        24th January 2019, 12:12

        Woops, I forgot about the Renault concept from early 2017, thanks to @ftruth for reminding me. Same thing still applies though. Renault were 9th in 2016.

      5. Well that Redbull concept not only differing by being made by the team when they were on their high, but that they/newey wqs asked to do it afaik, and it wasn’t the team’s idea in the first place, while the ferrari/renault/mclaren ones were clearly just marketing stuff to generate some positive news in a time, when mostly negqtive ones were made about them

    2. OK, what’s McLaren’s vision for 2019, though? :-)

      (sorry, couldn’t resist, I’m still on the Stroll challenge so needed an outlet)

      1. Incidentally, in that last picture in the gallery of McL’s vision, is that venue supposed to be a futuristic Monaco?

        1. @phylyp Just hoping they’ll have ambulances capable of an intervention on what looks like an elevated 75° banking.

        2. The Wakanda Grand Prix

      2. PS until when runs the Stroll challenge? Australia flag fall or when returning to Europe.

        1. @coldfly – it’s the latter, after the A-B-C races. :-)

      3. regarding Mclarens vision though, what makes them believe the Isla Nublar Grand Prix is to take place around the Mosasaurus Pen? And why are their Two lanes only one of which is green flagged? and also what about the grooved track? Slotcar technology to overcome battery restrictions?

    3. Hahahaha, Mclaren started to design cars for playstation when their F1 team imploded in the early 20s is what i read from this “vision”. A bit harsh on yourself there.

    4. Someone tell me again how many world championships did Eddie win? Last time I checked he was a number 2 driver. I always feel you need to respect drivers in every era for winning world championships.

      1. By your own logic, you can’t criticise Irvines opinion because you’ve never been a Formula one driver.

        1. @username, he is has a right to critise just like any one of us. But calling a 4 time world champion a one trick pony goes beyond criticism and is disrespectful considering he is best placed to know how difficult it is to win one

      2. Hahaha, Irvine is hilarious. Just as Villeneuve. Sour men that got into a seat (which is an achievement that is not to be underestimated) but were relatively mediocre. On content: I somewhat agree on Vettel who is one of the fastest out there but only on an empty track. Don’t agree on Schumi at all. He had Hakkinen as the next best thing and that was about it. Hardly a competitive era.

    5. Who cares about 2050???come on mclaren we need some serious confirmation on speed, reliability,performance for. 2019,2020 not 2050! Concentrate on designing a better chassis for the present. Really disappointed…

    6. With all full EV cars racing on bridges track at 500kph of speed, I’m more amazed that in 2050 we’re going to have drone cameras that can keep up with the racers.

    7. Ervine speaks about Michael the way Bottas speaks about Hamilton. If you never figured out how the number ones does it maybe dont call them a one trick pony…

      1. Maybe by placing Michael up and above Vettel he justifies himself and places himself on par with Vettel.

        1. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
          24th January 2019, 11:00

          Maybe by placing Michael up and above Vettel he justifies himself and places himself on par with Vettel.

          The whole interview reeks of this tbh. Note the passing references to when Michael would ‘just copy me when I was faster’ lol

    8. McLaren Applied Technologies doesn’t produce F1 race cars. Whether they spend time and resources on an inoffensive render or work flat out, it won’t just fix McLaren Racing problems.

      It’s like someone criticising your sister for spending time drawing because your grades(not hers) are terrible.

      1. Unless your parents spend all money on your sister’s crayons rather than your private tutor :P

        1. @coldfly that was exquisite!
          @alanmclaren do you work for McLaren? Are you Ron Dennis legacy and changed names to suit mclaren,

      2. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
        24th January 2019, 11:03

        @alanmclaren I agree with you on this. However in the midst of the embarrassing slump they are in, marketing should have known better than to put out a concept as ridiculous and focused upon vanity as this.

        The casual observer also doesn’t know the difference between M.A.T and Mclaren the F1 team, they just see the entity as a whole.

        1. @ftruth

          However in the midst of the embarrassing slump they are in, marketing should have known better than to put out a concept as ridiculous and focused upon vanity as this.

          It’s like you have never heard of Zak Brown!

        2. @ftruth – good point, thanks for clearing that up. You’re right, I didn’t know this had been put out by the other division of McLaren.

          @asanator – LOL :)

          @bascb – quite true, their road cars have been received well by reviewers. It probably goes to show that McLaren do have the skills needed for good cars, but success in F1 involves threading a lot of needles perfectly.

      3. Good point there @alanmclaren.
        Also means that the focus on technology (IA for improving the car setup and driving style, electrical drive, active suspension) makes far more sense – surely these are the things M.A.T. are working on, producing and seeing as where their future lies @coldfly, @tonyyeb.

      4. @Coldfly I really liked your point! Although I’d say I don’t have such a deep view on how McLaren Group allocates budget either by “purchasing loads of crayons” to MAT an leaving McLaren Racing to their own luck or giving them both leveled conditions for both to shine and then the race team is spoiling everything.

        @ftruth spot on! Still, IMHO pure criticism coming from F1 fans which are mixing responsibilities within the group is a bit harsh. Sometimes everything involving McLaren’s name comes to an inquisition tone where they are always on the “burning side”.

        @Sush Merkat: Sorry if its my English, but to what extent whether I work at McLaren or not matters in here? Still, if it pleases you, the answer is no, I don’t. And really I can’t understand your second question. Moreover, I’m a McLaren fan as my nickname suggests and this is something I suppose it’s still fine. That’s why I’m on their side no matter what and will always hope for better days to come. Is it clarifying enough?

    9. I think the current Sky deal in the UK is only gunna hurt F1, and people at Formula E HQ will be laughing their asses off.

      My suspicion is it will encourage people to watch other motor racing series. I don’t think that will cause massive damage to the F1 brand, or at least not a lot more than has already been done. Liberty Media bought F1 to make money, so I guess it is in their own interest to keep the cars racing.
      I think the Brexit will have an impact, but I don’t think it will be such as to require teams to uproot from the UK and move to Europe.

      1. If only IndyCar wasn’t locked behind a similar pay wall with BT Sport..

        1. @eurobrun I thought complete Indycar races were free to watch on Youtube.

          1. @drycrust
            Not sure if anything has changed for this season, but the last 3 years, all practice and qualifying (plus support races) have been free to view on YouTube, but the race itself has been blocked in the UK.
            However I’m not sure about catch up. They’re usually good with highlights.

          2. @drycrust @eurobrun Full race re-runs are uploaded to Youtube the Thursday/Friday after the race.

            Practice & Qualifying are live on Youtube although that may change this year (In terms of qualifying anyway) due to the new broadcast arrangements with NBC because anything there broadcasting live cannot be streamed live on Youtube & they may be showing more qualifying sessions live this year.

      2. @drycrust You mean ‘continental’ Europe as the UK is, in fact, already in Europe geographically.

        1. @jerejj
          After brexit they plan to get a trawler and drag the whole country 500 miles into the Atlantic to formally remove us from Europe. Expected benefits are better weather and better fishing.

          1. better weather

            So that’s the motivation behind Brexit? It’d been eluding me for the last two years :-)

          2. I’m not sure if the Man from Atlantis will agree with that.
            He will surely use his oil dollars to block the UK invading their space.

          3. Going to tow Britain outside the 5 mile limit?

            For the sounds of sensation across the nation, listen to Radio Goodies. FOM!

    10. Eddie Irvine has no right to comment on Vettel’s ability as an F1 driver considering he only managed to win 4 races in his career, half of which were handed to him on a plate by his teammates.

      1. Everyone has the right to comment or give their opinion on any topic. It may not align with your opinion and that is fine. Asking an ex formula 1 driver what he thinks about a current formula 1 driver is hardly a crime…

        1. I agree that his comments are super salty, and he’s basically a nobody… but of course he has the right to express his own points of view.

          I just wish race fans didn’t cover it as the obvious clickbait it is…

          Isn’t Irvine best known for wearing stupid looking sunglasses?

    11. José Lopes da Silva
      24th January 2019, 9:57

      «”I think manufacturers should not be allowed in Formula 1. I think they should be allowed in as engine suppliers and that’s it,” Irvine added.»

      Best and more accurate Irvine comment ever.

      1. So no Ferrari or McLaren then…

        1. Presumably you mean Mercedes not McLaren? It’s an interesting thought but it’s not going to happen.

          1. McLaren could be considered a manufacturer as they do manufacturer road cars & have built there own engines for some of the more recent one’s.

            1. McLaren’s road car engines are actually built by Ricardo, based on engine architecture bought from Tom Walkinshaw Racing, who incidentally helped develop it as a version of Nissan’s VRH race engines (dubbed VRH35L) & powered the R390 GT1 Le Mans racer from the 90s.

            2. How does he get time to do that and drive them as well?

    12. Said the 1999 WDC runner-up.

      That’s A cool-looking car regardless of whether the F1 car-design actually were to be like that in 31 years or not. I wish I could travel forward in time to find out how they’re actually going to look like in the distant future.

      I agree with Isola.

      ”that so got up his nose he rang a media hub up north and gave them a spray.” – LOL.

    13. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
      24th January 2019, 10:57

      Renault did this first, and better. At least it still looks somewhat utilitarian and functional. McLaren’s effort is just embarrassing.

    14. Red Bull blocking Ricciardo from testing with Renault says more about Ricciardo’s caliber and pace than it does about Renault… how deluded does the latter have to get?

      1. Hey @pratyushp276, I think that’s what Renault are saying – if Dan was going to a dud team RB wouldn’t care. So it’s a sort of complement to Renault.

    15. The circuit and the car are obviously way over the top but I don’t think many here appreciate how much the sport has changed in the last 30 years. Look at some of the new circuits from 1990s and compare them to the newest abu dhabi for example. While the track is pretty awful from racing pov it is extremely futuristic design when compared to 1990s designs. In 30 years we will take similar step ahead. It obviously won’t be a scalestrix track with massive loops in monaco but building racing tracks is becoming more and more expensive and with new technologies we can build things we weren’t able to even 30 years ago. There will be new tracks that will be very futuristic but at the same time there will be races that run on current then-old tracks.

    16. Irvine looks like he’s going for the Villeneuve title of irrelevant opinions? That one-trick pony has as many championships as he has race wins, so…

      1. @rocketpanda

        Maybe he missed 2013. Vettel won 9 in a row. Was nearly 11 except for Hamilton’s superb drive in Hungary.

        Even with all the qualifiers, best car, Webber as teammate, maybe traction control, ending 4 championships with 9 consecutive GP wins is astounding.

        1. The Red Bull car at that stage was superb and Webber had basically given up by then (still tried hard but he was ready to retire). It was still an amazing effort by Vettel and far better than anything Irvine could have ever done.

    17. The future?, what?

      I’m still waiting for the Pink Panther to step out of that car and go into Grauman’s Chinese Theater.

    18. Apparently the future is expected to be luminous with neon lights everywhere. Very cyberpunk I must say. Do I like it. Absolutely not but maybe it grows on you.

    19. Dear McLaren,

      A 2050 vision of F1 already exists:

      F1 and Wipeout fans.

      1. I was just about to question whether McLaren would be able to compete against the Qirex Prototype and its absolutely overpowered minigun.

    20. Looks like hotwheels had a hand in it. Electric driven I presume.

    21. Why in the world would we want AI to assist the driver? Then we wouldn’t get great moments like: “Out. Stay out! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN! IN!…”

      The human element is why we watch because humans make mistakes and mistakes are interesting.

      1. Given how indecisive some AI is, it could still happen…

    22. Well most teams being located in the UK, the championship inaugurated in Silverstone, and having UK media usually having usually high bias towards themselves are 3 things which easily can make a british echo chamber (not using the sometimes more fitting intertnet slang for this situation).
      I would be really curious that compared to global viewership numbers, how big slice has the UK and compared to that, the percent of the lost viewership why FE would laugh at F1 as that Twitter post refers to

      1. Back in 2001, before pay TV became serious in large territories, Britain was one of the “big four” territories for TV, alongside Brazil, Germany and Italy. However, that was when races reliably generated 6-8 m per race, and peaked at 13 m. Nowadays, a race that is live on Channel 4 and optimally-timed (e.g. just after the England football match) might manage 4 million combined. Sky-only rounds struggled to hit 2.5 m.

        It would not surprise me if the UK was now barely in the top 10, even considering the decline of some other audiences – I know the USA has overtaken it (last I checked, 1 in 8 viewers are now from there, since free TV became an option) suspect Canada, Mexico, Japan and China have also done so, and Poland probably will next year with Kubica rejoining the grid. However, the USA is the fastest-growing market, American journalism interest so far hasn’t kept pace and British media is becoming increasingly aligned with Liberty, so expect the language advantage to continue propelling the British “echo chamber” effect for some time.

        1. Forgot to mention France is teetering on the brink of overtaking the UK too.

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