Yesterday, the great and the good from the world of motorsport descended on McLaren’s Technical Centre in Woking for the unveiling of the team’s 2012 F1 contender, codenamed MP4-27.

If you’re an ardent F1 fan, then you’ll already have pored over all the details on, or the main UK broadcast rivals BBC and Sky F1 Digital. For a dose of intelligent reflection from the most popular experts, pay a visit to James Allen on F1, Joe Saward and F1 Pit Reporter for SPEED channel, Will Buxton.

If not, then it’s worth setting aside a few minutes and reading what they have to say.

The MP4-27 is the car that Vodafone McLaren Mercedes hope will deliver them back to the top of the rostrum in both the Driver’s and Constructor’s Championships, after a drubbing by Red Bull Racing in 2011 (and previously in 2010). The combination of Adrian Newey, the hottest engineer in F1 and Sebastian Vettel, the hottest driver in F1, has made a formidable opponent and McLaren are determined to fight back from the first race of the season in Melbourne.

In the following video, former World Champions Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton share their thoughts on the upcoming 2012 season, together with what drives them and their team in their pursuit for success. In addition. McLaren MD Jonathan Neale also provides his insight into the development of the MP4-27 and how it differs from last season’s car.

Given how early we are in the season, with only 2 cars (from Caterham F1 and McLaren) currently revealed, I was surprised to see the comment from Sky Sports’ Technical Analyst Mark Hughes that the MP4-27 represented “..nothing new” and the more asinine remark that “..McLaren are still yet to uncover the secret of Adrian Newey’s ongoing success at Red Bull.”

Hopefully such speculation is not indicative of Sky’s F1 coverage for the season ahead. As McLaren’s Team Principal Martin Whitmarsh said yesterday, even they don’t know how good a car they’ve built and won’t really know until qualifying at Melbourne. To conclude anything at this stage, especially given how much the cars will change between now and mid-March, smacks of naivety or downright link-baiting to grab prominence in the search listings.

I guess all we can say just now is the drivers looked calm and refreshed from the winter break, the engineers looked satisfied with their endeavours and the team as a whole were realistic in their aspirations for the season ahead and the amount of work they need to invest in order to beat Red Bull.

Roll on Melbourne.