The F1 Effect

Explore the mind-blowing science and technology behind an F1 car

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Paintwork

06Paintwork

Paintshop

McLaren Racing’s paintshop is comprised of 14 skilled technicians – it takes four full days (that’s 96 hours) of labour to completely sand, prime and paint a single MCL32 chassis

  • PRIMER

    3 litres

  • BASE COAT

    2 litres

  • CAR REFINISHES SYSTEM

    AkzoNobel using Sikkens products

Paintshop
34µm The thickness of the anthracite grey AkzoNobel base coat – that's just 0.03mm.

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Prototype Technology

05Prototype Technology

Prototype Technology

Our stereolithography (SLA) prototyping facilities uses lasers moving at 25m/s to heat-treat a bath of liquid photopolymer resin to rapidly form new components. Far quicker than conventional methods, this technique creates 400 new parts each week.

  • MCL32 Electronics Info

    Supplied McLaren Applied Technologies, including chassis control, power unit control, data acquisition, sensors, data analysis and telemetry

  • MCL32 Instruments Info

    Dashboard supplied by McLaren Applied Technologies

Prototype Technology
25m/s The number of metres per second our rapid-prototyping machines scan at to help us build 400 new components every week.

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Go on a journey of F1 tech innovation >
Power Unit

04Power Unit

Power Unit

Honda’s new RA617H power unit is comprised of 3,500 components, revs to 15,000rpm and reaches temperatures of 900degC when running at full throttle. Off the startline, it will reach 200km/h in less than five seconds.

  • Weight

    HONDA RA617H 145 kg

  • Capacity

    1.6 litres

  • Cylinders

    Six

  • Max RPM

    15,000 RPM

Power Unit
125,000RPM The number of times the Honda turbo-charger spins per minute.

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Explore the history of the F1 engine >
Chassis

03Chassis

Chassis

In our carbon laboratories, we’re able to measure the tensile strength of carbon-fibre samples. This tiny strip withstood a force of 4.5 tonnes – far in excess of any requirement on the car – before failing, ripping itself apart with ballistic strength.

  • Monocoque

    Carbon-fibre composite, incorporating driver controls and fuel cell

  • Weight

    Overall vehicle weight 728kg (including driver, excluding fuel)
    Weight distribution between 45.3% and 46.3%

Chassis
34,000 We use this many linear metres of carbon fibre every year.

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Watch the fascinating story of carbon fibre >
Manufacturing

02Manufacturing

Manufacturing

Mazak’s multi-axis machines have massively reduced the time required to manufacture components. In 2014, it took three men 12 hours to machine a single F1 wheelnut. With our new machines, we can produce one every two hours.

  • BODYWORK

    Carbon-fibre composite, including engine cover, sidepods, floor, nose, front wing and rear wing with driver-operated drag reduction system

  • Front & rear suspension

    Carbon-fibre wishbone and pushrod/pullrod suspension elements operating inboard torsion bar and damper system

Manufacturing
16,000 A grand prix car is the world’s most complex jigsaw puzzle, comprised of 16,000 individual parts.

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Discover the secret life of an F1 component >
Simulation

01Simulation

Simulation

Every Formula 1 team tests intensively away from the racetrack. Our brake dyno is a perfect example of how we assess concepts and components before trying them in the heat of competition. But it’s only one of an increasingly important suite of simulation tools.

  • Brake system

    Featuring Akebono brake calipers
    and master cylinders, the Akebono
    ‘brake by wire’ rear brake control system,
    and carbon discs and pads

  • Clutch

    Electro-hydraulically operated, carbon multi-plate

  • SAFETY STRUCTURES

    Cockpit survival cell incorporating impact resistant construction and anti-penetration panels

Simulation
1,200°C At the limit, a carbon-fibre brake disc reaches peak temperatures of 1,200°C – hot enough to melt silver.

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Find out how simulation saves laptime >

MCL32 TECHNICAL SPECIFICATION

Full technical details of the McLaren-Honda MCL32, including power unit, chassis and transmission specification. View the MPCL32 tech spec

McLAREN APP

Keep up to speed with the McLaren-Honda Formula 1 team throughout the 2017 season with the official McLaren App. Download the McLaren App

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