Honda spec-3 engine to power McLaren in Austria

As largely anticipated, Honda will supply its latest spec-3 power unit to both McLaren drivers in next weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix.

The unit provided a welcome boost of power when it was tested in free practice in Baku by Fernando Alonso. Grid penalties and a lack of optimal mapping decided Honda not to run the engine in qualifying however.

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“At the previous round in Azerbaijan, we were able to bank our first points of the year and I think it brought some brightness into our team,” said Honda F1 boss Yusuke Hasegawa in the team’s official preview. 

“We also tested the updated PU, the Spec 3, with Fernando on Friday and we were able to confirm some progress in terms of the power output.

“We have proceeded with the mapping back at the factory utilising the data we collected, and we are going to bring the Spec 3 for both drivers this weekend.

“I think we have some improvements in our competitiveness and I am looking forward to seeing our performance in Austria.”

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McLaren-Honda racing director Eric Boullier welcomes Honda’s upgrade which will be coupled with a few improvements on the teams MCL32 chassis. 

“There’s been no let-up in our development push all season, and, while the result in Azerbaijan was nothing to truly celebrate, it was a sign that we are working well and able to capitalise whenever an opportunity presents itself,” said Boullier.

“With a number of improvements planned for the Austrian weekend, not least the proposed new Spec Three power unit upgrade from Honda, I’m hopeful that we’ll be in a position to get amid the other midfield runners and take a useful step forwards.”

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