According to McLaren racing director Eric Boullier, the Woking-based outfit is in the process of finalising Fernando Alonso's new contract with the team.
The Spaniard said in Malaysia that he is expecting a final decision on his future between the Japanese and US Grands Prix, but all signs appear to point to a renewal of his lease with McLaren.
Alonso's huge retainer has apparently been agreed with the remaining sticking points centered around marketing and other details of the deal.
The 36-year-old is apparently insisting on having an exit clause included in his contract in the event that McLaren-Renault does not perform next year or if a more competitive team wants to sign him.
"Until agreements are signed, anything can happen. Wait for the official statements," said Boullier in Sepang.
The Frenchman confirmed that McLaren has a 'plan B' in the event that the Alonso talks cannot be finalised.
"Yes -- in the sense that there are several drivers who would like to drive for McLaren," he said.
"But at the moment we are focused on agreeing with Fernando. However, we do not comment further on this topic as the process of drafting the contract is underway."
It is believed another contract sticking point is that Alonso would like to contest next year's Le Mans with Toyota, with McLaren executive Zak Brown saying recently he is open to that.
But Boullier said: "I would prefer to see Fernando achieve success with McLaren."