McLaren Splits With Honda And Signs Three-Year Renault Deal

The inevitable has become reality. The McLaren F1 team has agreed to end its engine partnership with Honda and signed a three-year deal with Renault.

Motorsport learned of the news from sources close to the deal. It is thought that the relationship between McLaren and Honda has simply become irreparable following almost three full seasons of lackluster powerplants supplied by the Japanese automaker.

After both Mercedes and Ferrari said they weren’t interested in providing Mclaren with engines, Renault was the only option. McLaren will partner with them until the end of the current engine regulations after the 2020 season.

It is reported that Renault will supply Mclaren with identical power units that it provides for the Renault team and Red Bull Racing. Toro Rosso will switch from Renault to Honda power from 2018 onwards.

As part of the deal, Renault will sign Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz as part of the decision from Red Bull’s secondary team to end its Renault engine contract early.


  • Shtekeris

    I’m sorry for silly question, but why does Ferrari and Mercedes has their own engines, and McLaren isn’t building their own?

    • supermanuel

      Not a silly question at all, but I would expect it’s a question of resources. F1 is insanely expensive to participate in, without the added cost of developing the engine as well.

      • steve

        Except McLaren also has a road car division that uses their own engines, so it would make sense to develop an engine for their racing cars.

        • yawn

          Thecurrent power unit formula is prohibitively expensive. It’s that simple.

        • supermanuel

          Even for McLaren, the difference between road car engines and F1 engines is obviously so great and the cost so significant that it doesn’t make sense at all. Let’s just imagine that they know what they are doing.

        • JimmyK

          Someone corrects me if I’m wrong but I think they have a partner company that makes the engines for them.

          • Knotmyrealname

            This was answered a few days ago. Yes, Ricardo make McLaren’s engines.

          • supermanuel

            There you go.

        • rover10

          In some ways it’s better to use someone else’s engine, than face the embarrassment of failing so publically. Such an outcome could damage the company’s core business. The Honda debacle should not do so much damage to the company’s reputation, just a bad decision in the first place.

  • Denzel

    I didn’t expect to see them with Ferrari since they are rivals on and off the track. As for Mercedes they left the partnership 4 years ago to do their own thing and now seen as a rival at least off the track. But at least they will be competitive with Renault in terms of power and reliability.

  • Zed68

    It would be so amazing if Honda managed to fix their problems and the engine became a success !

    • LeStori

      If Honda gets its act together then it will be Red Bull’s gain and McLaren’s loss. Red Bull effectively has two engine suppers now. Renault at its main team and Honda at its development team, Toro Rosso. Would not be hard for Honda to be moved to the main Red Bull team if all went well.

    • Knotmyrealname

      Yes, it would be amazing. I’m guessing McLaren’s patience just drew to an end. They had 3 wretched seasons with not one podium finish yet no doubt were offered many excuses and empty promises. At some point you just have to draw things to a close and move on. If Honda get their @rses kicked hard enough and stop the excuses then one day they may be great again. Let’s see. I feel Honda’s ‘problems’ are mostly internal.