After enduring their worst season for 30 years last term when they failed to finish on the podium, the former multiple World Champions are aiming to make a strong start to F1’s new regulations era in what is their final season with Mercedes engines prior to a 2015 reunion with Honda.
The team have become the first outfit to confirm a bespoke ‘launch’ event for their new car with the MP4-29 to be unveiled to the F1 world on their official website at midday on January 24.
As well as unveiling young Dane Kevin Magnussen alongside team leader Jenson Button, the launch will also reveal McLaren’s livery for 2014 amid speculation that the team could revert from chrome to the orange used in the late 1960s following the departure of title sponsor Vodafone and impending split with Mercedes.
McLaren’s launch confirmation means the team’s all-new car will be launched four days before the opening test at Jerez, whereas rivals Lotus have already revealed they are skipping the first session to spend more time developing their E22 in the wind tunnel.
Mercedes’ works team, meanwhile, are planning to roll out their new W05 on the opening morning in southern Spain on January 28.
2014 pre-season test schedule
28-31 January – Jerez, Spain.
19-22 February – Bahrain International Circuit, Bahrain.
February-2 March – Bahrain International Circuit, Bahrain.
The Sky Sports F1 Online team will be providing live commentary of all three winter tests, starting in Jerez on Tuesday January 28, with live updates from trackside also on Sky Sports News