WOKING, SURREY, UK – 19th March 2013 There is a new standard ECU (Engine Control Unit) in 2013 that featured on all Formula 1 cars that took part in the recent Australian Grand Prix.

It will power the 2.4-litre V8 engines this season and the new 1.6-litre V6 turbocharged parallel hybrid engines in 2014 and beyond.

Supplied by McLaren Electronics Systems, the new ECUs were run for the first time on the track by most teams in winter testing in February, just six weeks before racing began in Melbourne.

The McLaren Technology Centre
The McLaren Technology Centre

Photo by: Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

They replace the previous ECUs that have been running very reliably since the standard ECU was introduced by the FIA in 2008.

An ECU comprises several thousand parts, tens of thousands of solder connections and hundreds of thousands of lines of software. It is a very complex piece of equipment that controls the powertrain and DRS, and acts as a car's primary data system.

The electronic units themselves ran without incident in Melbourne, but there was a software-related issue that meant that Mark Webber's Red Bull Racing car's garage data system had to be re-started during the formation lap. That disrupted his preparations for the start of the race, for which Mark and the team has our apology. We are working together with them to prevent any recurrence.

McLaren Electronics Systems supplies standard ECUs to Formula 1, NASCAR and IndyCar.

McLaren Group