McLaren Plan to Start 2003 with Old Car

The McLaren-Mercedes team plan to start the 2003 season with a modified version of their 2002 challenger, Mercedes-Benz motorsport director Norbert Haug has said.

McLaren Plan to Start 2003 with Old Car

The McLaren-Mercedes team plan to start the 2003 season with a modified version of their 2002 challenger, Mercedes-Benz motorsport director Norbert Haug has said.

The Woking-based team are making dramatic changes to the machine for 2003 after they struggled to get to grips with this year's car, but will not have changes ready in time for the season-opening Australian Grand Prix.

"Engine, aerodynamics, chassis and tyres are the four key things and we have to sort them out much better this season," Haug said. "That is why we are taking our time and will start with a modified 2002 car in the first race in Melbourne."

The new MP4-18 machine is not expected to be wheeled out until the start of the European season at Imola, the fourth race of the year. But Haug insists that does not mean the team have already conceded defeat.

"We are not here to give up and let Ferrari go for glory again," Haug told German paper Cologne Express. "Our crew is hungry for success. We will fight back. It might take some time, but be sure of it, we will be back again."

World Champions Ferrari could also start the 2003 season with a modified version of the car they used at the end of this season before introducing their new design later in the year.

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