Coca-Cola sponsorship for McLaren fact or fiction? 11 July, 2012 Jul.11 (GMM) Sources continue to differ on recent reports regarding soft drinks giant Coca-Cola entering Formula 1 as title sponsor for the McLaren team. The business journalist Christian Sylt suggested recently that Coke, arguably the most recognised brand name in the world, could replace McLaren’s title sponsor Vodafone. It had emerged recently that Vodafone is currently reviewing its major sponsorships. Another F1 journalist, however, on Tuesday rubbished the “stupid” story on the basis that McLaren already has a drinks sponsor, Lucozade. But two well-placed sources insist that the Coke rumours are real. One of the sources said that “he can prove” that Coca-Cola’s global head of sports sponsorship has been obtaining detailed data on the beverage sponsorships sector in F1. He said Coke has “more than a passing interest” in the sport. The other source, meanwhile, said the Coke/McLaren link is so strong that a potential 2014 McLaren livery has been contemplated that harks back to McLaren’s classic red and white of the 80s and 90s. McLaren’s current grey/silver livery dates back to 1997, but its engine partner Mercedes‘ rival works cars are now also coloured similarly. Moreover, the Woking based team will begin to pay for its Mercedes engines from 2013, as Force India does already. “If McLaren goes ahead and switches its livery it would make sense to do it for a brand as big as Coke,” said Sylt on Wednesday. Subbed by AJN. Tweet Related NewsHerbert says McLaren should stick with ButtonMcLaren-Honda aiming for Abu Dhabi testMcLaren won’t announce drivers before DecemberAbu Dhabi Grand Prix: McLaren preview Yas MarinaMcLaren deny Sainz reportsSainz emerges as a contender for second McLaren race seatMcLaren-Honda to make track debut on FridayMcLaren staff departing to make way for team AlonsoAlonso deal done now McLaren to decide on his teammateFerrari engineer Stella may follow Alonso to McLaren Bec “It had emerged recently that Vodafone is currently reviewing its major sponsorships.” This is due to the loss of brand exposure from such deals as the Sky UK deal, and the forthcoming Sky Italia deal. Vodafone are likely to lose $6.5 million in AVE brand exposure due to the 18% loss in viewers due to Sky poor viewing figures (averaging only 684k per race), and the BBC’s loss of nearly 2 million viewers per race. emma bec. ware is the proof in what u say.? as if the beep were losing that many and sky. ware else will they watch it .some how like the main storey u talk garbage Bec From the OFFICAL viewing figures as supplied to FOM. Kimi4WC Too much talk from McLaren lately, their PR department doing pretty well though this season. Might be a good time for McLaren team to become a Advertising Agency instead of Racing Team. fawxx Coca Cola Mclaren Racing sounds… like a joke. and we wont be able to make fizzy drinks joke anymore. LOL Psych4191 @fawx, not true, we could say the driver’s performance was rather… flat. Their championship hopes have fizzled out. etc etc I’m ready for a livery change for McLaren, their silver has gotten boring.