McLaren-Honda MP4-31, 2016

McLaren MP4-31: First pictures revealed

2016 F1 seasonPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

The first pictures of McLaren’s new MP4-31 have appeared online.

The Honda-powered team face a crucial 2016 campaign after enduring their worst season since 1980 last year.

However the team’s torrid 2015 season has not dented the team’s confidence in its engine supplier.

“Believe me: the full works backing of a multinational automotive manufacturer is the only platform from which real success in modern Formula One can be achieved,” said executive director Ron Dennis.

“As McLaren-Honda, therefore, we’ve vowed to work together, and to win together, and that determination has become further cemented as our relationship has deepened through the shared challenges we faced last year. ”

However Dennis declined to make predictions about when the team would win a race – something it hasn’t done since in 2012.

“As we embark on the second year of our renewed McLaren-Honda partnership, all of us remain united in our purpose. That purpose is to develop our team towards our shared ambition: to win,” he said.

“We’ll make no predictions as to when those wins will come, but I can say without fear of contradiction that every member of our team has worked with truly relentless dedication over the past few months. The result is that MP4-31’s developmental trajectory has been usefully steepened over the winter, and I’m consequently very proud of our team’s efforts.”

As well as featuring the taller sidepod crash structures familiar to all the 2016 cars revealed so far, the new McLaren also appears to have an S-duct in its nose. While the team had vowed to stick with its ‘size zero’ power unit, the rear packaging of the MP4-31 appears no narrower than it was last year, and may be slightly wider.

Beneath the skin Honda have used the winter break to address some of the fundamental shortcomings of its previous power unit for its new RA616H.

“Learning from last year, we’ve made changes to the compressor and other hardware of the power unit during the break, maturing our overall concept from last year,” said Honda motorsport shief Yasuhisa Arai. “Our focus will be to test the car’s balance with the new chassis and power unit, and specifically the ERS direction during the eight days of winter testing.”

New branding from Chandon and Richard Mille, which was announced yesterday, also features on the car.

McLaren MP4-31 pictures

McLaren MP4-31 video