home icon / F1 News, Reports and Results / McLaren focused on Renault performance not reliability issues

McLaren focused on Renault performance not reliability issues

© XPB 

As it prepares its 2018 charger for Renault power, McLaren is ramping up its expectations for next season despite the French manufacturer's recent reliability woes.

Renault's engines have suffered from a spell of failures lately which have hit both the works team and its customers, Red Bull Racing and Toro Rosso.

But McLaren's Eric Boullier isn't overly concerned by the troubles, and points to Red Bull's performance and Max Verstappen's recent wins which have wetted the Woking-based outfit's appetite for 2018.

"Fixing reliability is a challenge, but it is always easier than finding performance," Boullier told Motorsport.com, although Honda would likely disagree with that idea.

"What I just would like to take on board is that in Malaysia and Mexico, they were proper runaway wins.

"The Renault engine won two races in the last four races, and in a very fair and clean manner. So no concern at all."

Red Bull's end-of-season level of performance has raised the bar for McLaren however, and Boullier knows the team will have a big challenge on its hands from the outset next year as it attempts to measure up to its rival.

"They have definitely stepped up the last three races, and it is a good reference for McLaren now. So we know who we have to beat next year and that is it," he said.

Another difficulty which McLaren faces is adapting the Renault unit to a design which initially centered around its troubled Honda engine.

With a completely different architecture to contend with, the design changes have been numerous.

"We had to redesign the clutch and the gearbox," says McLaren designer Matt Morris.

The cooling and radiator requirements are also completely different, with Morris admitting that McLaren will simply rely on Renault's recommendations for the first year.

"Only with more experience does it make sense to develop something of our own," he said.

Gallery: The beautiful wives and girlfriends of F1 drivers

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter