McLaren team boss won’t rule out the team designing and building its own engine to race in Formula  1.

McLaren-MP4-12CThe team’s sports car arm has produced its own 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 engine for its new MP4-12C production car (pictured), while the F1 team continues with its long-time association with Mercedes-Benz. For the moment, at least…

But with new engine rules coming into place in 2013, Whitmarsh has told Motor Sport that an in-house engine was still up for consideration.

“We are ruling nothing out, because we are an ambitious team,” he said.

“Formula one is the third largest sporting event in the world and the best environment for brands to differentiate. But if I’m honest, we have no plans to build more than 4,500 [MP4-12C] units.

“Comparing the cost (of producing a F1 engine) with the 4,500, then that’s probably not the right business model,” he is also quoted as saying in the German media.

It is also believed that FOTA – the teams’ association headed up by Whitmarsh – is maintaining a quietly critical position of the incoming engine rules, which are targeting the use of 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbocharged engines.

“If it does not attract any new car manufacturers [to F1], one of the main goals of the new regulations will have been missed,” Whitmarsh added.

[Original image via Car Advice]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.