The 2017 Formula One pre-season winter testing has come and gone, and we’ve all got a good look at all the teams’ cars and their potential. Of course, the cars could look very different in the first race in Melbourne this coming weekend (26 March), but we could already see how many teams have interpreted the new rules differently and taken very distinct design approaches e.g. the goose neck suspension link of the Mercedes and Toro Rosso or the slotted elongated nose pylons of the McLaren.
The latter, incidentally, has shed the silver and/or black livery in favor of orange, a color they have used in testing in 1997 and 2006. But lest not one forget that the orange theme is regarded as the team’s ‘traditional’ color, used by Bruce McLaren in the 60’s.
The 2017 McLaren-Honda Formula 1 racing car, the MCL32, comes in Tarocco Orange livery – a colour developed by AkzoNobel in collaboration with McLaren-Honda. AkzoNobel, based in Amsterdam, is a leading global paints and coatings company and a major producer of specialty chemicals. The new Tarocco Orange color harks back to McLaren’s roots and provides a striking contrast to matt black and gloss white finish on the body.
The 2 companies have been working together since 2008, when AkzoNobel first became the official supplier of paint solutions to the McLaren Formula 1 team. McLaren-Honda will use AkzoNobel’s premium Sikkens brand of paint for its Formula 1 cars for the 2017 season.
“Our color and coatings expertise shows up in many unexpected places, even in Formula 1,” said Peter Tomlinson, Managing Director of AkzoNobel’s Vehicle Refinishes business. “We share a passion with McLaren for creating efficient, high performance technology. McLaren-Honda Formula 1 team is known for their iconic livery and the new colour will add a new chapter to this, which we are proud to be part of.”
Jonathan Neale, COO of McLaren Technology Group adds, “Since McLaren began its partnership with AkzoNobel, we’ve always been looking at ways to push paint technology to its furthest extent. We’ve already explored the practical limits of chrome finishing, reducing our carbon footprint and reducing curing times. Now, with the McLaren-Honda MCL32, we’re leveraging AkzoNobel’s colour expertise and technology. The results are stunning.”
“We’ve also made significant progress in reducing the average curing time of bodywork parts by more than half, and lowering the paint shop’s carbon footprint by up to 80 percent. We will continue working with AkzoNobel on further innovations as we investigate coating possibilities, both for now and for the future.”
The 2017 MCL32 is driven by Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne, the team’s former reserve driver in his first full season. The team’s winter testing was lackluster but McLaren is a seasoned team in motorsports so here’s hoping they iron out the kinks by this weekend, because we all love a good underdog story.