Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren, Circuit de Catalunya, 2022

First picture: New McLaren MCL36 makes its debut on track

2022 F1 season

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McLaren have run their new MCL36 car for 2022 on the track for the first time just days before the first pre-season test in Barcelona.

The team took part in a short shakedown of the car to test basic systems at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, ahead of the three day test that begins at the circuit on Wednesday.

Lando Norris was the first of the McLaren drivers to get behind the wheel of the MCL36, which features dramatically overhauled aerodynamics in line with the major technical regulations changes introduced this season. The was lacking the logo of team sponsor Velo, a brand of British American Tobacco.

McLaren are the second team to conduct a shakedown test at Barcelona today, after Haas ran a similar shakedown of their VF-22 this morning.

Pictures: 2022 McLaren MCL36 on track

Video: 2022 McLaren MCL36 on track

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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29 comments on “First picture: New McLaren MCL36 makes its debut on track”

  1. Please, no more logos! It looks fantastic! ahahahaha

  2. That livery gets worse every time I see it.

    Last year’s car was classy. A well execcuted mix of colors. This one looks like a mess! that black strip with the light blue doesn’t work at all for me.

    1. +1 Last couple of years I thought they were going somewhere with their livery…now I think they’ve lost it again!

    2. Agreed. It’s a mess.

      1. Though I was the only one with that view.

    3. Yeeppp, they better stick with orange

    4. 1

      same with alpine! :(

    5. My brain for a moment went: oh wow ugly testing livery……ow wait its actually the real livery….

  3. Although not a fan of the livery, I do think it looks better on track than in studio (at the reveal)

  4. Like Brock above, I prefer the livery on track than in the showroom. It reminds a bit of their recent Indycar liveries with the black, which I quite liked. It’s not the best livery they’re had recently (I would put that at 2019 or 2020), but I don’t think it’s horrendous.

    It does look bland/empty without the Velo branding though. Hope they find something to fill that space with for the non-tobacco races.

    1. Guess they’re not allowed to write Vole or Love (or, in Spain, Olé)…

  5. Yikes. They main problem (for me) with the livery design is the black horizontal bar cutting through the blue swipe – it’s not going anywhere.

  6. If, from the designing perspective, this is the final product, then it’s hugely underwhelming. Is this all McLaren could come up with during the last three years when they had a chance to ditch seasons earlier and focus on the new regulations? I hope not.

    1. we love to disagree, the mclaren looks pretty bold to me.

  7. Have to say ( and I am a macca fan ) that this car is starting to look underwhelming compared to all the others – there seems to be little innovation and it all seems a bit basic but I guess there are a whole bunch of clever people working in this and maybe simple is best or that this is just a shakedown car and the real one will turn up at the first test ?

    1. Yes I agree. Design wise it leaves a mediocre impression. The design looks quite basic and lacking in original touches. I also don’t like the livery much.

      Let’s hope is delivers on track more than it appeals visually.

    2. I bet they’ll be ahead of ferrari.

    3. petebaldwin (@)
      22nd February 2022, 10:54

      I think this year is all about getting the right concept to work with the new regulations. We’ve seen various different approaches from the teams but if you’re on the right path, you can quickly develop the car and can make big improvements. If you’ve backed the wrong concept, it doesn’t matter how developed your car looks – there’s a limit to how much you can improve it.

      In addition to that, a big deciding factor between the teams will be the floors and how well they can get them working. We obviously can’t see any of that so it’ll be interesting to see how they all perform. A car that looks undeveloped up top isn’t necessarily undeveloped where it matters.

  8. That orange looks amazing in the sun!

  9. I think they’ve tweaked the livery to make it a little more palatable for the human eye!

  10. Those fat rear tires! The mechanical grip coming from those must be insane!

    1. The mechanic is going to have a hell of grip to remove it and place a new one on the car.

  11. Steven Jackson
    22nd February 2022, 8:52

    Really? I think it’s abominable. I don’t like any of the 2022 liveries, maybe Ferrari.

  12. Why even bother about liveries – I just want to hear how the shakedown went and whether there were any technical issues. Also want to hear about driver first impressions not bitching about a colour scheme.

  13. Just the way they put the orange on the front end-plate looks like a sticker on a toy car, absolutely disgusting.

  14. That papaya orange is starting look a bit like creamsicle orange. Bring back the Gulf livery!

  15. From the front it reminds me of Scott Dixon’s PNC Bank livery.

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