Martin Whitmarsh has admitted today that McLaren displayed exhausts at the launch of its new MP4-27 were made of plastic as their purpose was to hid the real deal from rivals.

  The MP4-27 was launched last week in Woking, with notable bulges on the side of the car where the exhaust exits were which appeared to hide the actual configuration. There was also an obvious lack of a complete diffuser, and Whitmarsh confirmed that the car displayed at the launch will not be the same as the car that runs at the first test in Jerez, starting tomorrow.

  "The exhaust was made of plastic, you won’t see those components in that form again," Whitmarsh confirmed to Auto Motor und Sport. "The car will look different at Jerez to what it looked last week, and a lot different in Australia. At the weekend at Idiada (Spain) we did an aero test where we had a series of news parts that were not on the car at Woking."

  Ferrari also admitted that it wasn’t displaying a finalised exhaust system, with chief designer Nikolas Tombazis telling La Stampa: "There will be a lot of work before the configuration is final", and Force India’s Otmar Szafnauer said that it was a sign of the finances available to the top four teams that they can afford to conceal their solutions.

"The big teams have the budget to make these sorts of parts just for the launches," chief operating officer Szafnauer said. "The car seen at our launch is certainly a lot closer to its final configuration than the McLaren or Ferrari."

Info: ESPNF1, Images: McLaren