Jenson Button will move on to his second internal combustion engine of the season for this weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix following his DNF in Bahrain two weeks ago.
McLaren spent much of 2015 struggling with the reliability of its Honda power unit, resulting in numerous grid penalties as a result of the regulations limiting component usage.
For 2015, teams were limited to using five of each engine component without receiving a penalty, with this being reduced to four for 2016.
Honda has made progress with the reliability of its power unit over the winter, but Button has already been forced into taking a second ICE after an issue forced him to retire in Bahrain.
“The Bahrain race weekend was bittersweet on my side of the garage,” Button said.
“We definitely saw another step in the car’s performance from Australia as we keep learning more about the handling and characteristics of the car, and bring new upgrades to each grand prix.
“Friday practice was a real positive, but unfortunately we couldn’t make it stick in qualifying and then suffered reliability issues in the race.
“Saying that, until the point when we lost power, the car had felt very good, and I’m hopeful that we can continue that momentum in Shanghai and make the most of the package we have.”
Honda F1 boss Yusuke Hasegawa confirmed that Button’s car would require a new ICE for the weekend, but is confident that the issue can be avoided in the future.
“There was a mechanical issue on Jenson’s ICE which we will replace for the upcoming race weekend,” Hasegawa said.
“The situation has been thoroughly investigated, and will be rectified in all future engines to be used.”
The Chinese Grand Prix is live across NBCSN and Live Extra this weekend. For full details, click here.