McLaren 2016 Car Launch

Car Launch - McLaren-Honda reveals its brand-new Formula 1 challenger, the MP4-31.

The new car incorporates a significant number of all-new innovations as well as mature design concepts from 2015. The result is a balance of remarkably elegant aerodynamic solutions with a highly space-efficient integration of Honda’s new-for-2016 power unit.

Chandon presents #TheF1Effect - Enjoy the spark

As we enter the first year of our partnership, Chandon presents #EnjoyTheSpark to celebrate the launch of the McLaren-Honda MP4-31.

Look out for more sparks of passion, openness and conquering spirit shared by Chandon and McLaren-Honda as we get set for the 2016 FIA Formula 1 season.

Smash it #TheF1Effect - Chassis

Sixty to seventy percent of a Formula 1 car’s structural weight is carbon fibre, so understanding the inherent strengths – and weaknesses – of different types of carbon materials is essential.

In our carbon laboratories, we’re able to accurately measure the tensile strength of strips of carbon-fibre samples. In this example, our engineers loaded a 10mm long strip of carbon, measuring just 1.3mm thick, into our rig and tested it in tension.

The sample reached a measurement of 4.5 tonnes – far in excess of any requirement on the car – before it failed structurally, ripping itself apart with enormous ballistic strength.

Lube it #TheF1Effect - Fuels & Lubrications

Without Mobil 1’s fuel and lubricant expertise, our engineering technology would be driven to destruction during the course of a Formula 1 grand prix.

A Formula 1 gearbox is relentlessly tested during a grand prix. Racing on the tightest circuits, a racing driver will change gear more than 4000 times – on average, every 1.3 seconds. Yet Mobil 1’s gearbox oil is the most delicate of coatings – at around 20 micrometres thick, it holds the gear teeth apart with a thickness less than that of a human hair.

Inside the engine, the forces at work are equally unrelenting: Mobil 1’s engine oil separates and cools more than 300 moving components, all while withstanding loadings more than 8,500 times greater than the force of gravity.

Spin it #TheF1Effect - Manufacturing

Mazak’s machining centres are the mainstay of McLaren’s manufacturing operation. The latest automated multi-axis machines have massively reduced the time required to manufacture metal and alloy components for our Formula 1 cars.

As a brief example, our old machines took three men 12 hours to machine a single F1 wheelnut, our new unmanned machines can produce one every two hours, slicing a massive eight weeks off the production time needed to make enough wheelnuts for a single race weekend.

Beam it #TheF1Effect - Prototype Technology

From the primordial soup rise more than 400 new racing components each and every week.

Our stereolithography (SLA) prototyping facility uses a laser moving at 25m/s to heat-treat the top layer of a warm bath of liquid photopolymer resin and rapidly form new components. This sort of rapid prototyping is at the cutting-edge of technology, and enables us to build and test parts far more quickly than using conventional methods.

The vast majority of parts are destined for our aero design and modelshop departments, where they’re deployed in windtunnel model tests.

At McLaren Racing, we use more than three tonnes of resin each year – that’s a lot of parts…

Blast it #TheF1Effect - Simulation

Of all the technology fitted to a Formula 1 car, the performance of the brakes is perhaps the most impressive: each disc features more than 700 individually drilled cooling holes, yet still reaches temperatures of up to 1200°C – hot enough to melt silver – during the lap.

It’s little surprise that they’re so powerful – drivers push the brake pedal with a force equivalent to more than twice their body weight, triggering deceleration forces of 5g. The brakes will bring a 200mph Formula 1 car to a dead halt in less than five seconds. Impressive.