The McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 is a Formula One race car used by the Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes team in the 2010 Formula One season.
The McLaren MP4-25 was officially unveiled at title sponsor Vodafone's headquarters in Newbury, Berkshire, United Kingdom on 29 January 2010. The chief designer of the car was Paddy Lowe, who is currently the technical executive director in the Mercedes F1 team.
The design uses a small "snorkel" air scoop mounted in front of the driver that channels air through a duct in the cockpit and towards the rear of the car. Changes in the pressure in the duct, in combination with small slots on the rear wing, causes the wing to enter a stalled state at high speed, reducing aerodynamic drag, and allowing the car as much as an extra 6 mph (9.7 km/h) on straights. The effect is controlled by the driver covering up a small hole in the cockpit with his left leg. Known internally as the RW80 it is widely called the "F-Duct" system either due to the shape of the air intake or the fact that it is beside the F of the Vodafone logo. Another term for the system is switchable rear wing (SRW). It was mildly controversial, with the Red Bull Racing team complaining to the FIA about the legality. The car was however cleared inspections prior to the season opener at the Bahrain Grand Prix.
The MP4-25 uses a 2.4-liter Mercedes V8 engine, which was the standard engine format for all cars until 2013. Mercedes was also the main engine supplier for the team until it was replaced by Honda in 2015. It utilizes Bridgestone tires, which was also the final year Bridgestone supplied tires to Formula one until Pirelli took over.
The car was driven by reigning world champion Jenson Button, who switched that year from Brawn GP, and 2008 World Champion Lewis Hamilton. The car was competitive overall, with 1 pole position set (Hamilton at the 2010 Canadian Grand Prix), 16 podium finishes (Button 7; Hamilton 9), 6 fastest laps set (Button 1; Hamilton 5) and 5 race victories (Button 2; Hamilton 3). The team finished second in the season, with 454 points in the Constructors Championship, behind the constructors' champion Red Bull Racing (498 points). Hamilton scored 240 points overall and placed 4th, 16 points behind the drivers' champion Sebastian Vettel while Button was classified 5th with 214 points.
The McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 is a high-end Class A car, with a starting rank of 1357 (same as the MAX rank of the Alfa Romeo 8C Competizione and Lamborghini Countach 25th Anniversary), a hidden MAX rank of 1619 (shared with the Nissan GT-R NISMO), and a PRO rank of 1766 (+409). It receives a Tuning Kit bonus of +49 points and is unique in that it has 10 Pro Kit levels instead of the usual five, making up for the five missing MAX Upgrade levels. Despite its low rank, the MP4-25 is capable of rivaling the BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage, Icona Vulcano V12 Hybrid, Devel Sixteen Prototype, Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport, Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Special Edition, and McLaren MP4-31.
The McLaren Mercedes MP4-25's performance is an acceleration/handling-focused one in which the MP4-25 is one of the fastest-accelerating cars in the game, only slower than the McLaren MP4/8. The MP4-25 covers 1,269 ft (387 m) in 1.8 seconds in order to reach its maximum speed of 303.5 mph/488.7 km/h from a standstill (with Level 3 Nitro), compared to the NEMESIS's 1,545 ft (471 m) to a real maximum of 305.3 mph/491.5 km/h in 2.4 seconds.
As a Formula One race car, the McLaren Mercedes MP4-25's handling is superb, just as intended, allowing it to turn more sharply than most other cars in the game. Its superb handling is supplemented by a very sharp drift radius, as a departure from the current trend of top-end Class A cars having wide drifting radii due to being biased towards top speed (and sometimes, nitro efficiency) at the expense of every other performance aspect. One thing to note, though, is that the MP4-25 has a tendency to oversteer, especially at high or full steering sensitivity settings, or when hitting mid-corner undulations on the track. As of the Car Blueprints Update, the MP4-25 is more stable than before, allowing it to travel through dangerous paths without skidding or spearing into the side of the track and wrecking.
The MP4-25, as previously mentioned, has a maximum total speed of 303.5 mph (488.7 km/h), which, like the NEMESIS, when compared to similarly-performing cars, is lower due to the MP4-25's heavy emphasis on acceleration and handling. An MP4-25 upgraded to 10/0/10/0 can reach a maximum of 289.7 mph/466.5 km/h at a rank of A1591. Its nitro stat is identical to that of the Ferrari 330 P4, along with nitro efficiency rated at 6/12/16. It is worth noting that the MP4-25's total speed isn't the highest in Class A; this puts the MP4-25 in a non-safe zone on a track like Tokyo where total speed and nitro efficiency are of the utmost importance.
When it comes to direct competition in Multiplayer, particularly in Multiplayer League where competition is fierce, when one using the MP4-25 is placed against a TRION of equal skill, the TRION may be the more reasonable choice. Given the fact the Nemesis has much more stabilized steering and drifting, if the MP4-25 wastes as much as half a second from skidding and/or desperate recovery, the Nemesis will take the lead (and will very much likely remain that way due to the Nemesis being slightly faster).
The McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 is generally considered by many players to be one of the best-performing cars in Multiplayer due to having superior performance over the TRION NEMESIS and BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage (the latter on short or technical tracks) for a much lower rank and lower cost. An upgrade configuration of 10/2/10/0 gives a rank of A1600 and a total speed of 290 mph/468 km/h; in tandem with the MP4-25's performance traits of a very quick acceleration and sharp handling/drifting, the MP4-25 has a very high degree of competitiveness.
At PRO, with a rank of A1766, the MP4-25, given its aforementioned performance traits, is very likely to finish first in most single-lap races and possibly some multi-lap races or, in very rare cases, Elimination races, so long as the player does not make any mistake. Competition at ranks above 1700 is fierce, swarming with the likes of the Aston Martin Vulcan, Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport, TRION NEMESIS, BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage, and McLaren MP4-31, meaning that players have no time to make errors, especially if using tickets. An MP4-25 with the aforementioned upgrade configuration of 10/2/10/0 is guaranteed a victory most of the time, as the only real competition between 1600 and 1670 includes other MP4-25s, Vulcans, and 3.0 CSL Hommages. Even though the McLaren MP4/8 has a higher rate of acceleration, it has no chance of winning against the MP4-25 due to the latter's much higher total speed.
In terms of Events, the MP4-25 is also very competitive. The MP4-25 dominates tracks where the BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage, Devel Sixteen Prototype, and TRION NEMESIS were once dominant on, including Tenerife, Sector 8, Dubai, and London. If one were to look at the leaderboards for The Tuesday Heat event in Sector 8 Reverse, (s)he would notice that MP4-25s currently fill up the top 100 spots for that event on that track.
Another way that this car is useful is its Mastery 15 Challenge, set in Alps. It awards 6000+ credits with an unboosted lap time of about 48 seconds. This is an overlooked niche, however.
According to the in-game data files, the McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 has a buying price of 9,500. As of the Car Blueprints Update, obtaining the car requires 30 McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 BP cards. Pro Kits cost 1,231,325, 14 of each Class A Parts card, 40 Custom Racing Engines, 2 Initial Tech cards, 2 Early Tech cards, 16 Mid-Tech cards, and 8 Advanced Tech cards.
Following its debut in the McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 Championship, the MP4-25 has never been released temporarily in the garage for players who didn't obtain the car. Instead, the car appeared permanently in the garage as of the Car Blueprints Update, and players who did not obtain the car via Championship need to collect 30 Rare McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 Blueprints to assemble the car.
- Main article: Championship/McLaren Mercedes MP4-25
The McLaren Mercedes MP4-25's Championship was held as the second Championship event on January 13, 2017, following the second revival of the Aston Martin One-77's Enduro Double Down event. The following 8 Tours must be completed in 8 days once the Championship is started: Nevada, Azure Coast, Tokyo, Venice, Iceland, Alps, Barcelona, and Rio de Janeiro.
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