- Scale guide
Driven by 2008 and 2009 World Champions Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, the MP4-26 was McLaren’s competitor for the 2011 Formula One season.
The MP4-26 was noted for its unique “L-shaped” sidepod arrangement, as McLaren attempted to feed as much good-quality air as possible to the rear-lower mainplane and the floor of the car. This was all done to get the rear-end working as well as possible following the loss of performance caused by the banning of the double-diffuser. The cooling radiators inside the distinctive sidepods were custom cut to perfectly fit the unusual shape. The nose remained high and long to create downforce and the MP4-26 was the only car that season which would feature the aerodynamic ‘snow plow’ splitter under the nose.
After a troublesome pre-season testing, the MP4-26 arrived in Melbourne for the new season with some significant improvements already in place. Podiums for Hamilton and Button in Australia and Malaysia respectively quickly established the MP4-26 as a faster car than Ferrari’s competitor, the 150° Italia, but still behind Red Bull’s RB7. A maiden win in China by Hamilton gave McLaren hope that they could continue to challenge Red Bull though an underlying lack of pace at the following race in Turkey caused both drivers to miss out on the podium, as Ferrari showed that they were still willing and able to bring the fight to the Red Bulls. This was followed by a strong double podium in Spain and a further third place in Monaco. In Canada, the MP4-26 claimed a second win after Button emerged victorious from what became the longest Grand Prix in Formula One history. In a rain-soaked race with six safety car appearances, Button crashed twice (once with his teammate, taking Hamilton out of the race), pitted five times, served a drive through penalty and fought through the field multiple times before overtaking Sebastian Vettel on the final lap and emerging victorious. After poor performances at the European Grand Prix and in the team’s home race at Silverstone, one driver would consistently finish on the podium for the ten remaining races of the season. Hamilton took victory in Germany and Button would win in Hungary and Japan before a double podium finish in Abu Dhabi, as Hamilton took the win, would show the competitiveness of the MP4-26. Sadly, this wasn’t enough, as the dominant Red Bull team took the Championship win with three races to spare.
Overall, the McLaren MP4-26 won six races, achieved 12 further podiums and scored 497 points, taking second place in the Constructors’ Championship.
This 1:12 scale model of Lewis Hamilton's McLaren MP4-26 Nosecone has been handcrafted and finished in our workshops with the co-operation and assistance of the manufacturer regarding original finishes, materials, archive imagery and drawings. The use of supremely accurate digital scanning of the original car has allowed us to perfectly recreate every detail at scale. Furthermore, it has undergone detailed scrutiny by both engineering and design teams to ensure complete accuracy of representation.
This model is one of many in our collection of miniature nosecones.
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