Toto Wolff has teased that Mercedes’ W14 car will “look very different” before the half-way stage of the 2023 F1 season.
Following another unsuccessful start to the new season, Wolff has accepted Mercedes have got their unique car concept “wrong” and declared the team must change their design direction in order to improve.
Mercedes’ senior management, drivers and engineering staff were involved in a crunch meeting to devise an action plan for recovery after the team’s lacklustre display at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.
And team principal Wolff says Mercedes have now agreed on “one design philosophy” to focus their efforts on.
“The question is what do you mean by a Plan B car?” Wolff told Sky at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.
“I think that the car is going to look very different in five, six or seven races based on the decisions that we have taken and the development direction that we have embarked on.”
Wolff insisted there is no “engineering arrogance” at the team and revealed that former Mercedes chairman and three-time world champion Niki Lauda would have advised Mercedes to copy the design of Red Bull, who have made a dominant start to the season.
“For Niki it would have been very simple, because simplicity is what brings you to the best decision and I know exactly what he would have said,” explained Wolff.
“‘Our car looks very different, let’s make it like the others and optimise it. We have a great team, we have great technology and infrastructure, we can do it much better than the others, so why don’t we just get on with it?
“Things are very simple always. You can always cut all the nonsense out, and at the end the simple decisions in life, which are very often instinctive decisions added together with data that supports them, and this is how Niki operated. Don’t overcomplicate things, get the basics right.”
Keyword: Toto Wolff teases Mercedes W14 F1 car will "look very different" in five-to-seven races time