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McLaren to drop silver livery for 2011?

According to speculation in F1 circles, McLaren could be set to drop most of the silver from its car livery for the 2011 season.

Last year, after the shareholding split with Mercedes was announced, it was rumoured then that Woking based McLaren might adopt a substantially new livery — given Mercedes GP’s plans for a similarly silver car.

Team boss Martin Whitmarsh said then: “It (the silver) is a McLaren brand colour; it works for our partners and us.”

Mercedes, however, ramped up its ‘Silver Arrows’ rhetoric throughout 2010 and now remains only an engine supplier to McLaren, with the shareholding ever diluted.

Indeed, this year, Daimler’s stake is scheduled to have been entirely bought back by McLaren.

A hint about McLaren’s branding and livery plans for 2011 is in the new official merchandising range for the forthcoming season.

For example, gone are the silver team caps of 2010, replaced by mainly black ones for 2011.  The team crew and management-style shirts and jackets are also black.