In the past, the collaboration between Honda and McLaren has brought amazing things to the automotive world, but only in Formula 1 competition. Now the newly renewed F1 partnership between the two looks like may lead to more partnerships that may bear a road-going model.
According to the British magazine AutoCar, McLaren F1 boss Martin Whitmarsh alluded to this possibility when speaking about the "multi-year" cooperation that will start with Honda supplying engine to McLaren Racing in 2015. Whitmarsh’s direct quote was: "Our road car strategy at the moment has no other automotive partner and Honda would be a good place to collaborate." In auto executive-ese, that translates out to: "Let’s see how this first leg pans out, then we will explore partnering with Honda on a road-going model."
McLaren is currently working on itsP13 sports car and Honda has nothing to do with its development.
So, where can the two vastly different companies find a common interest? Well, that question is pretty easy to answer, given you have kept your finger on the pulse of the automotive world. See, Honda wants to revive its S lineup after the S2000 fizzled away after a a decade of buzzing along at nearly 8,000 rpm to churn out enough power to justify its price tag. Add to that the likelihood that McLaren would love to deliver a lower-priced car to take on the lower-level 911 models or the Boxster S and you have a perfect chance for the two to collaborate on a lower-priced, roadster with plenty of horsepower to tackle a Porsche. Of course, we are simply speculating here...
Click past the jump to read more about Honda - McLaren cooperation between 1988 and 1992.
Honda and McLaren started their collaboration back in 1988 and during the four years this collaboration, they won 44 races from a total of 80, took 53 poles, set 30 fastest laps and won the drivers’ and constructors’ titles four times in a row. Most of these victories were brought by Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost.
The first racecar developed under this collaboration was the McLaren MP4/4, which was powered by a 1.5-liter V-6 Honda turbo engine with an output of 850 horsepower - one of the most powerful in F1 models at the time.
Next there was the MP4/5 race car that used a 3.5-liter V-10 engine and the MP4/6 engine that was powered by a Honda V-12 engine.