There has been speculation about a possible rebirth of the legendary team that was Honda & McLaren. Honda announced at a press conference on Thursday their decision to participate in the FIA Formula One (F1) World Championship from the 2015 season under a joint project with McLaren.
Honda will be in charge of the development, manufacture and supply of the powertrain, including the new 1.6 litre direct injection turbocharged V6 and energy recovery system (KERS), while McLaren will be in charge of the development and manufacture of the chassis, as well as the management of the new team, McLaren Honda.
From 2014, new F1 regulations require the use of a downsized 1.6 litre direct injection turbocharged V6 engine with energy recovery systems. McLaren will continue their partnership with Mercedes-Benz for the next year, which means the team will run Mercedes’ new engine for just one year.
AutoSport reports that Jenson Button has already expressed his joy about the revival of the hallowed ‘McLaren Honda’ team.
“McLaren Honda: I know how much passion, success and pride are encapsulated within just those two words,” said Button. “That’s why I’m so thrilled and excited about what is not only a fantastic opportunity for the team but also a great development for Formula 1 fans and the sport as a whole. I grew up watching McLaren-Honda Formula 1 cars racing and winning around the world – they wrote their own glorious chapter of F1 history.”
Honda’s decision to re-enter Formula 1 is primarily motivated by the new F1 regulations that require renewed engineering effort by the teams. Honda wants its participation to be a catalyst in encouraging further technological progress in the areas of internal combustion engine efficiency and energy management technologies like hybrid systems. Honda also hopes the new generation of Honda engineers can experience the challenges and the thrills of operating at the pinnacle of motorsport.
Ever since its establishment, Honda has been a company which grows by taking on challenges in racing. Honda has a long history of advancing our technologies and nurturing our people by participating in the world’s most prestigious automobile racing series. The new F1 regulations with their significant environmental focus will inspire even greater development of our own advanced technologies and this is central to our participation in F1.” said Takanobu Ito, President and CEO of Honda Motor Co., Ltd.
“The names of McLaren and Honda are synonymous with success in Formula One, and, for everyone who works for both companies, the weight of our past achievements together lies heavily on our shoulders. But it’s a mark of the ambition and resolve we both share that we want once again to take McLaren Honda to the very pinnacle of Formula One success. Together we have a great legacy – and we’re utterly committed to maintaining it.” said Martin Whitmarsh, CEO of McLaren Group Limited.