Photographs of Lewis Hamilton’s McLaren have been doing the rounds recently, after it was spotted that the MP4-22 was carrying four rear-view mirrors, two attached to the monocoque and two on the sidepod. McLaren have explained that they were testing the Mercedes engine to pretty much destruction at a recent test, and added the mirrors to allow Hamilton a better chance of spotting engine smoke – a tell-tale sign that the power unit is about to let go. An engine that is intact is much easier to learn from than an engine that comes back to the garage in a million pieces.
However, this isn’t the first time this year that McLaren have added extra mirrors to the car. While viewing a video highlighted by the Sidepodcast crew, it is clear that the Woking team did something similar in a pre-season test. Towards the end of the video, the extra mirrors are clearly visible as Hamilton rolls out his garage in Bahrain.
The relevant section begins at 7m25s and can also be viewed on YouTube by clicking this link.