McLaren will be allowed to make “necessary changes” to its 2020 F1 car when it changes power unit for next year, despite teams agreeing to freeze their chassis designs for next year.teams will continue using their 2020 chassis next year as a cost-saving measure following the disruption caused by the pandemic.
However McLaren had already agreed terms with Mercedes to switch to its power units in 2021. It will therefore need to make compromises to a chassis which was designed to accommodate a Renault.
Team principal Andreas Seidl said they support the change of rules and will be allowed to changes its MCL35 chassis in order to fit a Mercedes to it.
“There is no escaping the severity of the pressures faced by the sport right now,” said Seidl. “In the same way that decision to introduce the new regulations was aimed at improving the long-term health of Formula 1, the decision to postpone them has been made in the same vein.
“We support the postponement and have played an active part in the conversation around doing so. We recognise that it is crucial to protect the financial health of all the teams while ensuring a level playing field when we do go racing. Furthermore, this decision does not impact our change to Mercedes power units in 2021, and we will be allowed to make the necessary changes to our car to accommodate this.”
As reported earlier, McLaren will begin its mandatory factory shutdown tomorrow following the new restrictions brought in yesterday by the British government.
“The key focus for everyone in the team is on staying safe,” said Seidl. “Prior to shutdown, much of the team are working from home, with only critical staff working in the factory on split shift working schedules. This enables us to be ready to go racing again as soon as we can, while minimising the risk to our team.
“We all want to go racing and we carry that passion with us whatever our working arrangements are. The effort doesn’t stop, we just make sure that we are working in a safe manner.”
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