McLaren has not yet bought back all of the 40 per cent stake in the Woking based company formerly owned by Mercedes-Benz.

McLaren has not yet bought back all of the 40 per cent stake in the Woking based company formerly owned by Mercedes-Benz.

When announcing they would become competitors late last year, Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche said the 40 per cent stake in McLaren would be wound back by 2011.

The current engine deal is staying in place until 2015, but McLaren also confirmed that Mercedes' 40 per cent stake would be bought back.

"As a result, the McLaren Group will become a fully independent stand-alone corporate entity," the company said last November.

At the launch of McLaren's new MP4-12C production supercar on Thursday, team boss Martin Whitmarsh suggested that 29 per cent of Daimler's stake has now been acquired by the McLaren Group.

McLaren's other shareholders are the Bahrain state holding group Mumtalakat (30pc), Ron Dennis and the TAG Group (15pc each).

Whitmarsh said "some" of the profits of the sale of production supercars "will come back into formula one", although another project could be taking on its arch-rival Ferrari in GT racing.

He said McLaren officials visited Ferrari's Maranello headquarters last week.

"Our message there was 'We want to race with you. Where are you going to go? Why don't we go together?'" said Whitmarsh.

 

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11 per cent of McLaren still owned by Mercedes