McLaren admits to initial failure of making ‘balanced’ 2022 car – “We’re not quite there yet”

McLaren revealed that they were pushing for a more balanced 2022 car, saying the past years have taught them some valuable lessons.

McLaren had solid 2020 and 2021 seasons. The last one saw them lose out on the P3 they achieved in 2020 to their rivals Ferrari, who snatched it from them in an epic second-half comeback. Their car was very fast on high-speed circuits, but lacklustre on tracks like Monte Carlo.

However, there was a dizzying high for the team, which was their commanding victory at the 2021 Italian GP. It was their first victory since 2012, and it came at an absolutely crucial time.

Having studied the last two seasons, McLaren revealed that they were pushing for a more balanced 2022 car, saying they were trying their best to nail the new regulations and their automotive development.

Speaking to, McLaren technical director James Key said, “We did pay a lot of attention to drag on the 2020 car, and as we did for the ’19 car, that was a bit before my time, but I know that was a priority for that car and it all carried through.

“Efficiency is good. I think what we’ve seen with straight-line braking, which is one of our strengths, and high-speed corners reflects the sort of performance we can generate with the nature of the car we have.”

Lando Norris during practice for the Sao Paulo GP. Interlagos November 2021.
McLaren will look to make a competitive 2022 car. Source:

Final pieces of the puzzle

“What we’re missing is – we did work on this for 2020 and ’21 – try and generate that performance in low-speed. We know why we’re not quite there yet,” he continued.

“The car isn’t quite as robust as it is in high-speed in the low-speed corners. A lot of the work that went into the ’21 car was to specifically try and address some of these problems.

“Unfortunately, it isn’t just a silver bullet where we switch it on and suddenly it’s great. It takes a while to get them to work.

“That’s why we knew Zandvoort would be difficult. Equally how we kind of knew that Monza would be strong.”

Read more: McLaren reveals “staggering” problem that has led to unprecedented decline

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