McLaren evaluating concept changes for 2020 Formula 1 car

McLaren says it is considering concept changes for its 2020 Formula 1 car

McLaren evaluating concept changes for 2020 Formula 1 car

Renault customer McLaren is currently fourth in the constructors' championship ahead of the works Renault squad by 22 points after a step forward compared to 2018 in which it was sixth.

McLaren has favoured aero efficiency over out-and-out downforce and technical director James Key has said McLaren could change its philosophy in 2020.

It also worked to overcome a low-speed weakness as early as the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend, and a significant upgrade package for the Spanish Grand Prix played a part in its development through the 2019 campaign.

Asked by Autosport if he planned to change the concept, Key said: "I think there are some conceptual changes we need to look at, just because we're looking forward.

"Even though there's a reg change [in 2021] on the horizon potentially, we are looking forwards, and we want to see how we can begin to generate the performance that allows us to take genuine steps towards those at the front.

"Everyone around us is doing the same thing, so I think you need some conceptual changes for that.

"But in terms of the numbers surrounding the car, I think it's actually not in a bad place.

"At a track like [Singapore] we're still pretty quick in a straightline, so efficiency is still there, but we can generate, at least competing with the guys around us, the sort of downforce levels you need.

"So, I think fundamentally we won't change the numbers surrounding it, but conceptually it will change a little bit."

Key says McLaren faces a challenge in splitting its development across this season, 2020 and '21.

"It's a transition period, but I don't think it's one of those periods where there is a clear cut way," said Key.

"Sometimes you say we're done for this year, either because it's gone badly, or you're doing okay, or you're in no man's land and not under threat.

"I think for us, the positive direction appears to be the case for the team this year.

"It kind of makes sense to continue that learning a little bit longer, but focusing on next year at the same time."

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