Mercedes set to ditch current car for a different car concept

Since the beginning of the hybrid era we have seen a team dominate Formula 1 like never before. Mercedes AMG F1 have won 8 consecutive constructors’ titles as the FIA also set a precedent in minimising car design regulation changes. This season has seen the first big changes in the regulations since 2014 and the apple art has been upturned.

Despite Wolff’s silly comments to Lewis after the 4th race in Imola when he apologised to his star driver for giving him an “undeliverable” car, Mercedes are in fact the third quickest team on the grid. George Russell isn’t the just the  ‘best of the rest’ after the Ferrari and Red Bull drivers as he currently lies fourth in the drivers’ title race.

The problem for Mercedes is their favoured son and multi-year world champion is struggling with the current car concept, and has been proven over the years, different team mates prefer different styles of car.

It’s not that Mercedes knowingly designed a car that Lewis doesn’t favour, it’s just that the regulation changes and new wheel sizes were such a step into the unknown that the brains at Brackley had no real idea how the W13 would turn out.

No team can win forever and as such maybe Mercedes plight is just the circle of life.

Hamilton’s team mate has driven the worst car on the grid for years and clearly knows how to man handle the current beast that is the W13 to success. Conversely Lewis Hamilton is used to a car so well honed to his liking, he is struggling to adapt his driving style.

With Barcelona on the horizon, D-Day is coming for Mercedes F1. Whilst they have struggled with wind tunnel alone correlation to reduce the bouncing nature of the car, Barcelona offers them some hope on the horizon.

Having tested the car there in the pre season trials, Mercedes will be able to get some correlation checks done based on the data from February that will help them asses how the changes to the car since the start of the season have affected it’s performance in all areas of the circuit.

The dilemma they suffer is that if the concept they believed to be the way forward again proves to be incrementally progressing, do they ditch the car because Hamilton can’t drive it as well as George Russell?

Given Lewis has won 6 world titles, it will be incredibly hard if he again loses out to Russell for the team not to concede they need ‘to go a different way’ in car design going forward. Toto revealed this weekend, “Clearly it is a very sensitive concept.”

“At some point, of course, there comes the time when we have to decide what we are going to do next year. But it’s not like it used to be, when you could write off a year to focus on the next. The rules are staying largely the same.”

If we parse this comment, Wolff is suggesting in the old days a team would write off a year to change the concept for the next year’s car. But given the stability of the regulations that write off is better done this year.
So Barcelona is key for the W13.

If the team can get some better ‘real world’ correlation data when compared to testing in February, the decision will be made that the current W13 design lives or dies.

Clearly the Mercedes 2022 car is not going to beat the Ferrari’s or Red Bull’s in Catalonia – but it may give Hamilton a more favourable ride. And that will be the key as to whether the current no side-pod concept is ditched and a new way forward is sought.

If a new concept is forged, it will mean Mercedes are settling for no better than third this season as a constructor, but it could unsettle George Russell if the new chassis design goes the way of Hamilton.

21 responses to “Mercedes set to ditch current car for a different car concept

  1. Not only has 2022 exposed Ham as a fake champion and undeserving knight, it has also exposed MB’s dishonest ways pre-2014 to make FIA regulations favourable to themselves and adverse to the other cars. It is not that MB engineers are geniuses and others are idiots. Honda, RB and Ferrari engineers have shown that they are MB’s equals if not better.

    We recall how Russel, in his very first drive in a Merc, showed up Bottas convincingly. MB had to play their usual games in sabotaging Russel to get Bottas to win. MB will do anything to repeat that mischief in Ham’s favour. But Russel can’t be so easily denied as he is a superior driver to Ham.

  2. Does anybody now if teams can have different concept design for the two cars in the race,if it is allowed you would probably think MB would leave Russell with this design,which seemingly he can handle,and change Hams to the side pod design and then see which works best

    • @David Larkins, to the best of my modest knowledge, this would not be possible with the newly introduced cost saving methods. If MB do manage to do that, if would be quite a feat. Would live to see Mercedes Benz winning races again 💙

      • FIA way to help Redbull and Ferrari was introducing more time in the wind tunnel by that ridiculous points system if not Merc would be miles away.

  3. Heavily biased and utter rubbish of an article. I’m a Max Verstappen fan but this made me cringe.

  4. From what I have seen and read, I don’t think George Russell is enamored with or in favour of the current design of the Mercedes either!
    If a drastic change makes the car perform better and more drivable then surely he would welcome that too!

    And why do so many people knock Lewis Hamilton – remember that the “great” Fernando Alonso couldn’t keep pace with and challenge Lewis at McLaren whilst in the same car?
    I personally think most of them are doing it simply because of his skin colour but don’t want to be seen for the racists that they are – this includes the FIA and other big names in F1 who wanted to keep the G.O.A.T. driver to be Michael Schumacher and Caucasian!
    I would like to see Lewis Hamilton in the current Red Bull or Ferrari and see how if Verstappen or Leclerc could stay with him – I think not.

    • @ William Crist, are you for real, Hamilton beating Max or Charles LC??? In the same car, Hamilton could not beat Jenson Button (2010-12) Nico (2016) or GR (2022)

      Why would you like to do that to his fragile ego? One season with Max, and he would be arriving at races with make-up and in dresses? In the words of that other bumbling idiot “C’mon man!”

      • You making up history or what? Hamilton couldnt beat button or Rosberg? You sure about that? Hamilton literally beat Rosberg 2 year our of 3 to the championship. As for button Hamilton beat button on point 2 years out of 3 (I may be wrong it may only be 1 out of 3).
        I think you need to rewatch that last decade and half to refresh you memory.

    • I’m pretty sure with your knowledge that you are aware that Hamilton and Alonso both had 4 wins in 2007, right?

      Similarly, they both finished the season on 109 points each… ie equal to one another?

      And despite the media not passing on the information to the public, McLaren was already supporting Hamilton over Alonso from Monaco that year, the 5th race of a 17 race campaign.

      As to your ridiculous claim that the FIA wanted Schumacher to remain as GOAT due to colour, absolute rubbish.

      No 1, MS is not regarded as the GOAT by anyone. Statistics mean absolutely nothing
      No 2, Mercedes have been supported by the FIA since before 2014 with various token spends crippling the competition from catching up.

      As to your final point, both RBR and Ferrari don’t want or need Hamilton. They have two of the future greats already.

    • You have said it all..Hamilton is a driver that wins championships not on the podium in every race.
      Red bull and Ferrari are guilty of conspiracy theory with F1A.If you have followed F1well you will know this game started when Vettel was in red bull.They couldn’t shake car no 44.to stop him last year they sacrificed Marsi.who knows if the guy is not getting paid for that.
      Hamilton is paying the price because of BLM.
      I would not be surprised if MB are in this theory too.
      Racism it is.Period.
      May be a team that’s desperate to win championship should have him on board.

  5. There’s no disputing that Hamilton is a great driver. It just appears that he has lost focus on F1 and has got involved in too many distractions, which seem to go along with fame.
    If it’s not BLM, taking the knee, getting into using his name and position and setting himself as a spokesperson for others on matters not to do with F1. Considering owning a football club, he continually whines and makes excuses. He feels he is more important than anyone else, he craves attention, this is highlighted by placing himself over others by believing the rules do not apply to him in particular regarding the wearing of jewellery.
    In F1 you do need to be focussed and not distracted by other non related issues.
    Let’s see a return of the great driver that he undoubtedly is.

  6. This is clearly a biased article which ignores the fact that George has been lucky with the safety car in 2 races so far and Lewis the opposite. To say that George loves the car is rubbish. His results have been better overall but the nuances need to be understood. I really have trouble understanding why there is such an anti-Hamilton brigade. .

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