Toto Wolff: Mercedes boss says W14 automobile will ‘look quite different’ by middle of the 2023 Formula 1 season | F1 News

Mercedes have produced a disappointing start out to the 2023 Formula 1 season following seeing their eight-year constructors’ title streak finish in 2022 Watch Saudi Arabian GP final practice reside on Saturday at 1.30pm on Sky Sports F1

ten:46, UK, Saturday 18 March 2023

Toto Wolff says Mercedes’ W14 automobile will appear “quite unique” in 5-to-seven races’ time following confirming the group is now focused on “1 style philosophy”.

Immediately after becoming caught out by the introduction of new style regulations final season and seeing their streak of eight successive constructors’ titles ended by Red Bull, Mercedes opted to stick with the very same style philosophy for the 2023 Formula 1 season.

Nonetheless, a poor efficiency at the season-opening Grand Prix in Bahrain earlier in March led to Wolff admitting the group had got it incorrect, and would be taking a unique path, with speculation swirling more than an alternate ‘Plan B’ automobile style.

Speaking exclusively to Sky Sports F1’s Rachel Brookes following Friday practice at this weekend’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Wolff offered an update on the team’s plans for the coming weeks.

He stated: “The query is what do you imply by a Program B automobile?

Karun Chandhok requires a close appear at Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes ahead of practice at the Saudi Arabia GP

“I assume that the automobile is going to appear quite unique in 5, six or seven races primarily based on the choices that we have taken and the improvement path that we have embarked on.”

In addition to coming unstuck beneath the radical new 2022 regulations, Wolff says Mercedes’ capability to recover from their blunders has been lowered by the sport’s price cap, which was implemented in 2021.

“We all voted for the price cap to kick in with the aim of establishing a a lot more level playing field,” Wolff stated.

George Russell and Lewis Hamilton say they are hoping to ‘maximise’ their efficiency following a further challenging day in practice at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

“We have been bitten by that, that is clear at this stage, but I never want to ever say that the price cap does not let us to catch back up – it is a lot more challenging but we basically have to.

“The moment we make a decision, which we’ve performed, which path to go, exactly where we want to have the automobile, we’re just finding on with it and pushing tough with that 1 style philosophy.”

‘Lauda would want us to copy style of other cars’

Neither Wolff nor Mercedes’ British driver pairing Lewis Hamilton and George Russell have offered any detail on how the W14 will be altered, but the group boss appeared to hint that he believes moving towards the style of Red Bull’s pace-setting RB19 is the “straightforward” selection.

Wolff was asked about what former Mercedes chairman and 3-time F1 planet champion Niki Lauda, who played a important function in establishing the group as the sport’s dominant force prior to his death in 2019, would have advised in their present circumstance.

Niki Lauda (L) was a substantial component of Mercedes’ results prior to his death in 2019

“I miss him a lot, but I miss him as a pal foremost,” Wolff stated. “We are all missing him as a chairman.

“For Niki it would have been quite straightforward, due to the fact simplicity is what brings you to the finest choice and I know precisely what he would have stated.

“‘Our automobile appears quite unique, let’s make it like the other folks and optimise it. We have a terrific group, we have terrific technologies and infrastructure, we can do it a lot improved than the other folks, so why never we just get on with it?

“Issues are quite straightforward usually. You can usually reduce all the nonsense out, and at the finish the straightforward choices in life, which are quite frequently instinctive choices added with each other with information that supports them, and this is how Niki operated. Do not overcomplicate factors, get the fundamentals proper.”

‘There is a lot to find out from Aston Martin’

Whilst Mercedes anticipated to start out the season behind reigning planet champion Max Verstappen’s Red Bull, the truth they have been beaten by Aston Martin in Bahrain came as a main surprise.

Important components of Aston Martin’s automobile, which took Fernando Alonso to third behind the Red Bulls in Bahrain, are supplied by Mercedes, generating their impressive early-season efficiency a lot more damning to Wolff’s squad.

Fernando Alonso overtook the Mercedes pair of George Russell and Lewis Hamilton prior to finding previous Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz to finish third at the Bahrain Grand Prix

Alonso’s second-location finish in second practice in Saudi Arabia on Friday suggests Bahrain will not be a 1-off, but Wolff is attempting to take the positives and says he is delighted to see his pal and Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll enjoying results.

“Why it assists us, they have the complete rear finish from our automobile, the suspension, the engines, the gear box – all of that, so we know there are regions that are seriously superior, that we mustn’t query as well a lot,” Wolff stated.

“But it is other regions exactly where the vehicles are fundamentally unique exactly where we want to set our concentrate – there is a lot to find out.

“Lawrence has gone by means of so numerous challenging years, and now the group is on the up, they are thriving, so it is for us to find out and not the other way about as it was for numerous years.”

Formula 1 street racing is back! Watch the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix reside on Sky Sports F1 this weekend. Saturday’s qualifying and Sunday’s race are reside at 5pm. Get Sky Sports

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