The McLaren Group, which includes the Formula One team, is changing its name to emphasise the company's diversification away from its motor racing activities and into applied technology.
The Woking-based company will now be known as McLaren Technology Group. "We have long proven our capabilities on the world's racetracks and Formula One racing is and will always be a core area of activity for us," said group chairman and chief executive Ron Dennis.
“Racing fuels our competitive spirit, it is our crucible of innovation, it enables us to attract the world’s best engineers, scientists and data analysts, and the enormous popularity of Formula 1 provides a unique global marketing platform. We exist to win and nothing will ever divert McLaren Racing’s focus away from that ambition.”
"However, some time ago we set McLaren on a path of diversification and as a result we are today far more than just a racing team. Our new name therefore reflects our ever-increasing focus on innovation and the creation of disruptive technologies that will have a positive and far-reaching impact.”
The company employs over 3,000 staff, three quarters of which are not involved in motorsport activities. McLaren Applied Technologies provides advice and support to a range of industries, including oil and gas, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, aviation and financial services. Some of its long-standing technology partnerships include SAP, developers of the eponymous analytical software, and GSK, which uses McLaren technology to efficiently develop and manufacture new medicines.
A planning application was recently submitted for a new 57,000 square-metre “applied technology centre” at their Woking HQ – which would double the existing footprint – to include additional aerodynamic research facilities, workshops, research and development space, offices, meeting rooms, teaching and training space, and vehicle preparation and assembly areas.
McLaren Automotive produced 1,648 sports cars in 2014, an increase of 21 per cent on the previous year. Production is set to increase to 4,000 a year, as new models are introduced over the next three years.
The McLaren Formula One team, whose season starts in March, has not won a race since 2012. A new partnership has been agreed with Honda. Double world-champion winning driver Fernando Alonso has also joined the McLaren team from Ferrari.