McLaren F1 has decided to part ways with engine provider Honda after the 2017 season. Both teams have agreed that it’s in their best interests to go separate ways, and as such McLaren will use Renault engines for the next season. As for Honda, their run in F1 will live on as they will provide power units for Toro Rosso who currently use Renault power.
McLaren and Honda reunited in 2015 with Alonso and Button as drivers, Button later retired after the 2016 season and was replaced by reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorne. Despite using an underpowered power unit in 2016, the team managed to finish sixth in the championship. 2017 has seen some regular improvements with both Alonso and Vandoorne qualifying in the top ten and finishing in the points as well. The decision to end the partnership was announced officially at the Singapore Grand Prix 2017.
This will be the first time Renault and McLaren have partnered in F1. Elseweher, Renault have confirmed that Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz will join them in 2018.
Speaking about the divorce, Honda CEO Takahiro Hachigo, said “It is unfortunate that we must part ways with McLaren before fulfilling our ambitions, however, we made the decision with a belief that this is the best course of action for each other’s future.”
McLaren’s Zak Brown added “There has never been any doubt over Honda’s commitment and energy to the mission of success in Formula 1. They are proven winners and innovators. For a combination of reasons our partnership has not flourished as any of us would have wished. It is certainly not for the want of effort on the part of either Honda or McLaren, but the time has come to move ahead in different directions.”