LONDON — Mercedes went again to black on Wednesday with a smooth new Components One automotive they hope will enable Lewis Hamilton and George Russell to battle for wins and titles after a tough 2022 season.
The crew ended an unprecedented run of eight successive constructors’ titles with third place total final 12 months after wrestling with a bouncing automotive whose efficiency was exhausting to extract.
Whereas Russell celebrated his first Components One victory in Brazil, seven-time world champion Hamilton did not win a race all season for the primary time in a Components One profession that began in 2007.
“It appears good. Is she going to be as quick as she appears? I hope so,” commented crew boss Toto Wolff at a digital launch from Silverstone the place each drivers have been because of give the W14 some first shakedown laps.
“We’ve seen the automotive now and we’re considering is she quick or not? Have we cured a few of the issues? What are going to be the challenges that we spot on observe?,” added the Austrian. “And that could be a huge unknown.
“However we’re optimistic, there’s pleasure. We now have the instruments to know, to develop and develop the automotive and hopefully give George and Lewis one thing that works.”
Wolff stated the crew could be going “all-in” to get again in entrance and beat champions Crimson Bull, which has Max Verstappen chasing a 3rd successive drivers’ title, and runners-up Ferrari.
Mercedes ran a silver liveried automotive final 12 months and the return to the black of 2020 and 2021, tying in with the crew’s push for larger range, has the extra good thing about saving weight by eradicating paint and leaving uncooked carbon fiber.
“It appears nice in black,” stated Hamilton, now 38 and winner of a report 103 grands prix.
The Briton, beginning his eleventh season with the crew and “planning to remain somewhat bit longer”, stated he all the time believed he may get higher.
“I’m excited to go racing once more. I really feel calm, energized, and have my focus sharpened. I’m able to do what’s essential to win,” he stated.
Russell stated the crew had learnt quite a bit final 12 months “and hopefully we’ve taken a step up”.
“We’re all right here to win, it’s so simple as that,” he added.
“We have to see what challenges we face however the crew have put a lot exhausting work into this automotive, the motivation and the hearth inside the manufacturing unit is simply immense as a result of folks don’t desire a repeat of what occurred in 2022.”
Germany’s Mick Schumacher has joined the crew from Haas as a reserve whereas Mercedes additionally has some new sponsors with Qualcomm Applied sciences signing a multi-year take care of its Snapdragon model, beforehand at Ferrari.
The season begins in Bahrain on March 5, with testing on the Sakhir circuit subsequent week.
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