McLaren ends long term partnership with Toyota

McLaren ends long term partnership with Toyota

Finally, McLaren has its own facility that is ready for use after leaving the Toyota Gazoo Racing wind tunnel in Europe.

McLaren has built its own wind tunnel at its Woking headquarters, eliminating the requirement for the outfit to rely on Toyota’s, ushering in a new era for the Formula 1 team.

For more than a decade, the Woking team has been sending parts to Cologne to use the wind tunnel owned by the Japanese manufacturer. The team is now capable of finishing every task internally thanks to a recent major update to the McLaren Technology Centre.

Since 2010, McLaren has made use of the wind tunnel at Toyota Gazoo Racing (TGR) Europe’s Cologne headquarters. However, that agreement will come to an end this month when the team’s recently built tunnel at its Woking premises becomes operational.

“Toyota Europe’s wind tunnel and facilities have played a vital role in the development of McLaren single-seaters over the past 12 years,” said McLaren team principal Andrea Stella.

“The cars we have developed in these facilities will have won 14 Grands Prix and achieved 29 other podiums between 2011 and 2013.”

“We have established a good working relationship between the McLaren team and site personnel.

“Now that we are moving towards commissioning our own wind tunnel, which offers significant gains and aligns with the new structure being built within the team, we would like to acknowledge the work that has been done in the TGR-E wind tunnel which has been instrumental in the progress of the stable in the past.”

The design of McLaren’s challenger in 2024 and those that come after it will be shaped by their new facility. But Toyota’s Cologne wind tunnel was utilized to build all of the MCL60’s predecessors, including the MP4-26 deployed in 2011.

Woking is undergoing a number of significant changes, in addition to a new wind tunnel. Along with the installation of a brand-new, cutting-edge simulator, there have been significant staff changes, including the hiring of Rob Marshall and David Sanchez who will join from Red Bull and Ferrari, respectively.

Despite their wind tunnel collaboration coming to an end, Toyota desires to keep working together with McLaren on their Formula 1 program.

“Our doors remain open to McLaren,” said Rob Leupen, managing director of Toyota Gazoo Racing Europe.

“We wish them well with their new wind tunnel and, although this changes the services required from TGR-E and the frequency with which McLaren engineers are likely to come to Cologne.

“We have an open dialogue and are playing a constructive role in the process of integrating their new wind tunnel for the development program.”

Currently the World Endurance Championship winner, Toyota also helped Kalle Rovanpera win the World Rally Championship in 2022.

The Japanese manufacturer also participates as an automaker in NASCAR and the British Touring Car Championship, although it has no immediate plans to enter Formula One.

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