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McLaren Applied Technologies
McLaren Applied Technologies Logo
Partner Information
Based Flag of the United Kingdom McLaren Technology Centre, Woking, Surrey, United Kingdom
Founder Ron Dennis; Martin O'Connor (1991)
Announced 1 November 2013[1]
Broke
Role Battery; Powertrain
Official Website MAT

McLaren Applied Technologies, often abbreviated to MAT, is a British based technology firm and subsidiary of the McLaren Automotive group of companies.[2] Originally founded in 1991 as McLaren CompositesMAT have been one of McLaren's most successful research and development businesses, with interests in motorsport, space and health among others.[2]

MAT were originally involved in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship in 2013, when their subsidiary, McLaren Electronic Systems, were commissioned to develop the powertrain for the Spark-Renault SRT_01E.[1] MES were later absorbed into MAT, with the latter continuing to develop their powertrain for Mahindra Racing, before winning the tender to supply batteries to FE from the 2018/19 season.[3]

Background

MAT began their life as McLaren Composites in 1991, a project founded by Ron Dennis and Martin O'Connor to develop advanced materials for their future road car project, the McLaren F1.[2] McLaren Composites and TAG Electronics would later merge in 2004, becoming McLaren Applied Technologies as Ron Dennis restructured McLaren Automotive around their halo project: Formula One.[2] MAT took over the McLaren Group's customer research and development projects, with its own subsidiary, McLaren Electronic Systems, focusing on electronic systems.[2]

Formula E History

It would be MAT's subsidiary, McLaren Electronic Systems that was approached by the FIA and Formula E Holdings to develop a powertrain for the first ever Formula E car, being designed by Spark Racing Technologies and Dallara.[1] MES ultimately opted to make modifications to McLaren Automotive's new McLaren P1 powertrain, making the system more efficient and capable of running a relatively small formula car at 225 km/h without issue.[1] The powertrain was approved and duly fitted to the new Spark-Renault SRT_01E, and would be used by every team in the inaugural 2014/15 Championship.[1]

The Power of Batteries

MES, and later MAT, would continue to support their powertrain into the 2015/16 season, making minor upgrades to the design for Team Aguri and Andretti Formula E, who continued to use the old system.[4] They would also be commissioned to develop a system for Mahindra Racing, working with their parent company Mahindra & Mahindra to produce a new powertrain.[4] Their partnership would later come to an end in 2016, with Mahindra signing a deal with Magneti Marelli ahead of the 2016/17 season.[5]

Regardless, MAT continued to be the McLaren group's representative in Formula E, and would win a tender to supply batteries for the 2018/19 season.[3] This new battery, which was to be inserted into another Spark/Dallara creation dubbed the "Gen 2", was to last for an entire E-Prix distance, meaning mid-race car swaps were a thing of the past.[6] The new battery was also expected to cope with a power hike for the FE Championship, needing to be capable of producing 250 kw/h of peak power.[7]

Products

McLaren Applied Technologies, and their subsidiaries, have been involved in Formula E since the inaugural season, and have supplied parts and equipment to both of the base FE cars.

Spark-Renault SRT_01E

Main Article: Spark-Renault SRT_01E

Spark Renault SRT 01E

The Spark-Renault SRT-01E at the Geneva Motorshow in 2014.

MAT's first major contribution to the Formula E Championship was their creation of the Spark-Renault SRT_01E, the first homologated car for the FIA Formula E Championship, with McLaren Electronic Systems developing the base powertrain.[1] Capable of producing 200kw (270bhp) and reaching 225kmh (140mph), the SRT_01E was the first FIA sanctioned all electric race car to be produced, with all 10 entrants in the 2014/15 Formula E Championship issued with four examples.[8] Modifications to the car are not allowed (apart from race setup work), although from 2015/16, manufacturers were able to replace the MES powertrain.[4]

Spark Gen 2

Main Article: Spark Gen 2

Spark II

The new Formula E "batmobile": The Spark Gen 2

The second Spark creation for FE would be the radically different Spark Gen 2, which featured prototype style bodywork rather than a traditional open-wheel design.[6] The new car, boasting the MAT designed battery, will be the first car capable of completing a full E-Prix distance, with a potential maximum speed of 300km/h (186 mph).[6] Like its predecessor, the Gen 2 will be retrofitted with different powertrains when it is delivered to the ten Formula E entrants for the 2018/19 season, although all will use the MAT developed battery during the car's three season commission.[9]

References

Videos and Images:

References:

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 'McLaren to power new FIA Formula E Championship', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 01/11/2012), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2012/november/mclaren-to-power-new-fia-formula-e-championship.aspx, (Accessed 09/07/2015)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 'McLaren Applied Technologies: Our Story', mclaren.com, (McLaren Automotive, 2018), https://www.mclaren.com/appliedtechnologies/about/, (Accessed 01/02/2018)
  3. 3.0 3.1 'McLaren to supply new Formula E battery', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 28/09/2016), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/september/mclaren-to-supply-new-formula-e-battery/, (Accessed 01/02/2018)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 'Eight manufacturers to enter Formula E next season', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 23/02/2015), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2015/february/eight-manufacturers-to-enter-fia-formula-e-from-second-season.aspx, (Accessed 19/07/2015)
  5. 'TEN TEAMS ENTERED FOR THE 2016-17 FIA FORMULA E CHAMPIONSHIP', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 01/07/2016), http://fiaformulae.com/en/news/2016/july/ten-teams-entered-for-the-2016-17-fia-formula-e-championship/, (Accessed 08/07/2016)
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 'Introducing: the Gen2 Formula E car', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 30/01/2018), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2018/january/introducing-the-gen2-formula-e-car/, (Accessed 30/01/2018)
  7. 'Nine manufacturers homologated for Season 5', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 21/03/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/march/nine-season-5-powertrain-manufacturers-homologated/, (Accessed 22/03/2017)
  8. 'Car: Specification', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 2015), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/guide/car.aspx?page=1334, (Accessed 19/07/2015)
  9. 'Nissan joins growing list of automotive brands in Formula E', fiaformulae.com, (FIA Formula E, 25/10/2017), http://www.fiaformulae.com/en/news/2017/october/nissan-joins-growing-list-of-automotive-brands-in-formula-e/, (Accessed 25/10/2017)
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