Norris has led McLaren’s efforts so far this season, scoring 76 of its 95 points and recording its best result of the season by finishing third at Imola in April.
Teammate Daniel Ricciardo has failed to match Norris for form, prompting McLaren to swoop for Oscar Piastri as a replacement for 2023.
Ricciardo’s struggles with the current McLaren car have been well-documented, but Norris has also found it tricky to get to grips with the MCL36 at times, forcing him to adjust his driving style.
“I don’t think you can probably in any way say the car is made around me,” Norris told Motorsport.com in an interview ahead of the summer break.
“From what I want from the car, it’s like the opposite of what it’s giving me at the minute! And yeah, I would say the car I have now is completely not what I want for my driving style, and very unsuited for me.
“It’s not a bad thing, it’s just that’s what it is, and you have to adapt to it. That’s why I feel like I’ve done a reasonable job this year, adapting to something that is not quite what I want or like.
“That’s one of the improvements I’ve made over the last few years.”
Lando Norris, McLaren
Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images
Norris is locked in at McLaren until the end of 2025 after signing a long-term contract with the team earlier this year, making him central to its future plans.
Norris explained that he was working to have “a bit more of a voice” to help show the team “what we can look ahead to into the future, and what I want from the car more in the future.”
“I’m giving my opinion and saying what I feel like will help me go quicker in the car,” Norris said.
“Sometimes that’s a bit different from what Daniel has. But in general, we’re still aligned as a package with what we need to improve on.
“Definitely [I’m having] a bit more of a voice. I don’t like talking too much, because everyone has their own jobs and everyone is professionals in their own jobs.
“Sounding my opinion and talking about it a little bit, whether I lose every opinion I have, I don’t care. Just speaking up a little bit more and being confident in that stuff is always a good thing.”
Ricciardo told Motorsport.com he thought Norris was “doing a great job” both on-track and making his presence felt a bit more off-track as well.
“The on-track stuff, people can see he’s been driving very, very well,” Ricciardo said.
“But I think as well that gives you confidence, and then that confidence then shows off-track. I think the way he’s pushing the team as well, he’s started to get a good handle on that.
“He’s just showing growth I guess, showing another kind of level of confidence but with that bit of maturity as well.”