Vodafone McLaren unveils its new MP4-27

The new McLaren MP4-27

The new McLaren MP4-27

McLaren has unveiled the car it hopes will topple the dominant Red Bull team in 2012.

McLaren’s MP4-27 was revealed to the world by team drivers Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking.

The notable changes on the car are in the design of its nose and sidepods.

Former world champion Lewis Hamilton says that the car is a more refined unit.

“I think the car is probably the most refined-looking car we’ve had for some time now, so I’m very excited to get back into it,” Hamilton said.

“Obviously the nose is a little bit different to last year, and we’ve changed the sidepods. We had the L-shaped sidepods last year but the car is generally the same.”

Hamilton also made particular reference to the rear of the Vodafone-backed car. With blown diffusers outlawed for 2012, the Brit says that the team has made every attempt to get back lost downforce.

“Tthe back of the car is a lot neater than it was last year,” he said.

“It’s much, much tighter so the focus has been on making it as tight as possible to improve aerodynamics.

“The wing is a little bit better in terms of drag and we’ve tried our best to improve the rear floor, especially with no blown diffuser this year. It’s going to be very tricky for us – we’ll lose a lot of downforce.

“When we were off power last year we had an incredible amount of downforce with the exhaust blowing and we don’t have that this year.

“It’s the biggest loss for us and we’re trying to regain it in all other ways, but I think the guys have done a fantastic job.”

Pre-season Formula One testing commences in Jerez next week. Button will be the first to drive the MP4-27 over the first two days before Hamilton steps in for the final two.

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