user icon

Analysis of the Honda and Mclaren Situation

  • Published on 01 Sep 2015 19:09
  • comments 12
  • By: Harry Shovelar

Honda's new Engine Update for SPA Showed little progress, however that hasn't stopped the manufacture from being open and honest about current the situation and what they intend to do to build for the future.

AHEAD BUT STILL BEHIND 

Honda believe that they are currently ahead of Renault by the way of 25HP, that is according to Honda's Motorsport Chief Yasuhisa Arai who told Autosport that they are "25 ahead of Renault, but 30 behind Ferrari and 50 to Mercedes".  Although, from Renault's side of things, they have yet to use any of their tokens - their current Power Unit is the same which they had since Melbourne - whereas Honda have used some of their performance tokens through having two new Power Units in Spain and SPA. Arari before the Belgian Grand Prix, targeted to match Ferrari's Power Unit with their new update, however to no avail and Honda believe it is because they have not been able to match Ferrari's Internal Combustion.

Furthermore when Reliability is taken into account, they are lagging behind all 3 manufactures and as a consequence they have only ever been at 'Full Power' during the Hungarian Grand Prix where they had their best finish of the season,which were 5th and 9th.

ONLY PRIORITY STATUS

Although both Mclaren and Honda will always say they are in a 'Partnership' or they are a 'Works Team'. Unfortunately design conflicts have risen between both Chassis (Mclaren) and Engine (Honda). The MP4-30 was an aggressive design to start of with, so the engine was therefore packaged awkwardly and was hard to install, which then gave birth to having unreliability - causing the team to have 11 retirements this season alone. Reliability come about because the Power Unit design had produced overheating due to its compact nature. 

It appears that Mclaren will not relent on their chassis in order to accommodate Honda's 'Compact' engine with more generous dimensions for next year's car. Autosport presented this question to him, to which he responded with: "No it will be this package and we will work hard to improve it" 

The underlining problem which they have is that, although they say they are but in reality they are not really a Works' Team, comparative to Mercedes or Ferrari. Neither Chassis or Engine department can work harmoniously together, because they are not intrinsically united. Both organisations are separate from each other because they have different interests, so this increases the probability of getting things wrong - which appears to be the case at this moment in time.

Similarly, Red Bull are having the same problem with Renault for exactly the same reasons explained above. And it looks like their partnership will end at some point. Which suggests that both Renault and Honda give their respective teams' merely a priority status, which is entirely different to what the front running teams are currently doing. Meaning that they don't work close enough or on the same wavelength. Because Mclaren will only think about Mclaren and Honda will only think about Honda. And both businesses will want to be responsible for getting to the top, which is a recipe for disaster. 

FUTURE

Monza will definitely be painful, but Honda have set themselves some more promising targets, one of which is that they want to progressively catch up to Ferrari and Mercedes. Looking towards 2016, it seems that Honda will try to negotiate Mclaren's 'Size Zero' Chassis to install the next year's Power Unit without any teething problems as they did have for this year. 

Replies (12)

Login to reply
  • McLaren's fitting problem was not due to size issues, McLaren themselves said the engine size was according to what they told Honda they wanted. And the major issue they've suffered from this year is overheating, which is derived from the engine's compact nature and the fact Honda combined both ERS into one unit. Otherwise this article says a decent amount on their current situation.

    • + 0
    • Sep 1 2015 - 20:31
    • Could perhaps also be well worth mentioning that their lack of bigger sponsors and the low amount of cash they'll be awarded in this year's constructor's by now, they will be quite short on cash, potentially worsening their situation. And their current pace wont make it better.

      • + 0
      • Sep 1 2015 - 20:33
    • Good point!
      I have updated the article :)

      And on the money side, you make another point, they can only get that money back if they are able to find a decent title sponsor, which they have not had in the last 2 years.

      • + 0
      • Sep 1 2015 - 21:16
    • Thank you. Very nice article, I must say. I was actually writing on this aswell, although wont need to do that now. :) Yes, funding is a huge problem for them, in fact there's a concern that McLaren will be forced to e.g fire staff, although Boullier said that no such measures are currently needed. There was hopes up that Honda would bring them a japanese sponsor, but no luck so far. It will be interesting to see if they can deliver on the "more power than Renault" part, if they actually do, they will have two advantages over Renault, with their PU being both lighter and more powerful.

      • + 0
      • Sep 1 2015 - 23:18
    • khasmir

      Posts: 893

      According to Ron title sponsors are a thing of the past, but he says so many weird things ;)

      Regarding the money, not sure. Money gets split in a weird way in F1. Just look at the recent post here about the team budgets. Ferrari get the most money from FOM even though they haven't won a championship in years. But true, the lack of at least one big sponsor and the poor results will not help them.

      • + 0
      • Sep 1 2015 - 23:22
  • khasmir

    Posts: 893

    Very interesting article indeed and I totally agree with the fact they are not a real works team. Both Honda and McLaren have their own agenda and pursue their own goals.
    Add some Japanese stubbornness and this whole project could turn out to be a disaster. McLaren say they don't have a plan B, maybe they should start working on one...

    • + 0
    • Sep 1 2015 - 23:34
    • Stubbornness is not unique to the Japanese. In fact, if one British team has developed a talent for stubbornness - others would call it arrogance - it's Ron Dennis's McLaren organisation...
      The fact that an organisation with the pedigree, the history, the facilities and the works engine deal McLaren has, does not seem to be able to score a decent sponsor, must be a wakeup call for any team manager. But not for Dennis...

      • + 0
      • Sep 2 2015 - 10:02
    • Ron's Mad lol
      But we love him really

      I agree if Plan A does not work, then they will have to look elsewhere, especially with their current investment within the sport

      • + 0
      • Sep 2 2015 - 10:17
  • TonyB

    Posts: 18

    How can Honda be believed, Alonso was half a second slower than either TorroRosso in the first sector at Spa, which is pure power..... They are still down on Renault in spite of no upgrades by Renault during the year. They may come through eventually or give up like Toyota. I think they will give up....

    • + 0
    • Sep 2 2015 - 04:49
    • Perhaps their Internal Combustion Engine is 25 hp stronger but their ERS is just crap...

      • + 0
      • Sep 2 2015 - 10:04
    • I think it's because the Honda PU is running at 100%

      • + 0
      • Sep 2 2015 - 10:18
    • khasmir

      Posts: 893

      Button his comment during the race at Spa says it all: "it feels like they forgot to connect the batteries" :)

      • + 0
      • Sep 2 2015 - 18:36

BE Grand Prix of Belgium

Local time 

BE Grand Prix of Belgium

Local time 

Related news

World Championship standings 2021

Show full world champion standings

Test calendar

Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing

See full test schedule

Give your opinion!

Will Bottas challenge Hamilton for the world championship in 2020?

Team profile

Show full profile

Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
Grand Prix
Circuit
-
Bahrain
26 - Mar 28
Bahrain
16 - Apr 18
Italy
7 - May 9
Spain
20 - May 23
Monaco
4 - Jun 6
Azerbaijan
18 - Jun 20
France
25 - Jun 27
Austria
2 - Jul 4
Austria
16 - Jul 18
United Kingdom
30 - Aug 1
Hungary
27 - Aug 29
Belgium
3 - Sep 5
Netherlands
10 - Sep 12
Italy
24 - Sep 26
Russian
8 - Oct 10
Japan
8 - Oct 10
Turkey
22 - Oct 24
United States of America
5 - Nov 7
Mexico
12 - Nov 14
Brazil
19 - Nov 21
Qatar
3 - Dec 5
Saudi Arabia
10 - Dec 12
United Arab Emirates
See full schedule

Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
26 - Mar 28
16 - Apr 18
7 - May 9
20 - May 23
Monaco Monte Carlo
4 - Jun 6
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
18 - Jun 20
France Paul Ricard
25 - Jun 27
Austria Red Bull Ring
2 - Jul 4
Austria Red Bull Ring
16 - Jul 18
United Kingdom Silverstone
30 - Aug 1
Hungary Hungaroring
27 - Aug 29
3 - Sep 5
Netherlands Circuit Zandvoort
10 - Sep 12
Italy Monza
24 - Sep 26
Russian Sochi Autodrom
8 - Oct 10
8 - Oct 10
Turkey Istanbul Park
22 - Oct 24
United States of America Circuit of the Americas
5 - Nov 7
12 - Nov 14
Brazil Interlagos
19 - Nov 21
3 - Dec 5
Saudi Arabia Jeddah Street Circuit
10 - Dec 12
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
See full schedule
show sidebar