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McLaren

McLaren offers first glimpse of brand-new wind-tunnel

The facility is one of a number of infrastructure upgrades being made by the Woking team.

Piastri Norris Japan
Article
To news overview © XPBimages

McLaren's heavily upgraded wind-tunnel at the McLaren Technology Centre is now operational, with the team no longer required to use the Toyota facility in Cologne.

Since 2010, the team has been using Toyota's tunnel in Germany owing to the fact that the existing facility at its Woking base was not fit for purpose as cars continued to grow in size.

However, when Andreas Seidl came aboard as Team Principal in 2019, he recommended that the team invest to upgrade the facility to bring McLaren's aerodynamic research back in-house and streamline the process instead of travelling to Cologne.

CEO Zak Brown agreed, with the four-year project involving tearing out the internals of the old wind-tunnel but keeping its size and shape.

This was on cost-effectiveness grounds with it being deemed simpler to upgrade the closed wind-tunnel to modern F1 specification as opposed to the more time-consuming complete new facility.

Parts and sections of the new wind-tunnel were broken down into smaller pieces simply to fit them into the pre-existing space available before they were joined back together to create the new tunnel.

McLaren has revealed that every part of the tunnel in the test section itself is brand-new, with just the external structure, and main fan itself, being retained.

The old Cologne facility had been an integral part of producing the upgrades that have transformed McLaren's season, with the team pointing out that "its impact will continue to be felt in the packages we are putting together for the remainder of the year."

The 60% scale model tunnel was first used ahead of the summer break for basic correlation work, with the 2024 car set to benefit from the new facility although the 2025 machine is the first that will be fully designed using the upgraded wind-tunnel.

McLaren's infrastructure improvements have also led to a new driver-in-the-loop simulator, repurposing the old factory as a composites facility and a new machine shop.

Check out some images from the new wind-tunnel at the McLaren Technology Centre below!


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	© McLaren
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			© McLaren
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	© McLaren

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