McLaren-Honda are the fourth team to launch their 2016 car, the MP4-31, ahead of the new F1 season and are confident that they have taken a step forward since renewing their partnership last season. They had a difficult 2015 campaign, which often saw them bringing up the rear only just ahead of the Manor Racing team throughout the season.
The car will hit the track for the first time when the first winter test gets underway at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona on 22 February. the livery remains largely unchanged from last year and the team are still without a title sponsor going into the 2016 season. Ron Dennis has reiterated the team's commitment to get back to the top of the pile in F1 and believes, wins will come, but refused to put a time frame on when they will achieve their ultimate goal.
"As we embark on the second year of our renewed McLaren-Honda partnership, all of us remain united in our purpose," McLaren group CEO Ron Dennis said, as quoted on their official site.
"That purpose is to develop our team towards our shared ambition: to win. We'll make no predictions as to when those wins will come, but I can say without fear of contradiction that every member of our team has worked with truly relentless dedication over the past few months.
"The result is that MP4-31's developmental trajectory has been usefully steepened over the winter, and I'm consequently very proud of our team's efforts," he stated.
Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button have been retained by the team for the 2016 campaign and the Spaniard, who showed some frustration during a difficult 2015 campaign, has made it clear that he is "100% ready" ahead of the new challenge.
"The start of a new season is always a special feeling, characterised by a lot of anticipation for the year ahead. This year is no different: I'm excited and raring to go," the two-time F1 world champion said, as quoted on their official site.
"Last year the spotlight was very much on McLaren-Honda as we embarked on the first year of our renewed partnership. It was a tricky season for all of us, but we learned a hell of a lot."
"Likewise, it's been a very productive winter for me. I've been training extremely hard, as usual, but also enjoying time with my family, and keeping tabs on all the hard work going on at the McLaren Technology Centre, Woking, where the McLaren guys have been doing an incredible job to get everything ready in time. The Honda boys have been working flat-out in Sakura, too," the former Ferrari driver explained.
"The aero package shows fantastic attention to detail. The whole car is beautiful in fact – it's particularly nicely packaged from an aerodynamic point of view as I say – and I'm 100 per cent ready for the challenge ahead."