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Toto Wolff in the paddock at the Bahrain Grand Prix

Toto Wolff reveals Mercedes is already testing a new concept

Following a lacklustre first race in Bahrain where the two Mercedes cars finished in P5 and P7, it appears that the Silver Arrows are calling time on their current car concept

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After calling for “radical” change, Toto Wolff reveals Mercedes is already testing a new concept

Lewis Hamilton driving his Mercedes during the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend
Lewis Hamilton driving his Mercedes during the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend. (Image Credit: @MercedesAMGF1 on Twitter)

Mercedes did not have the season opener that they were hoping for in Bahrain. While the Silver Arrows were the third-best team in 2022, they have potentially fallen even further this year.

In the build-up to the Grand Prix on Sunday, Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff seemed to indicate that his team will be moving away from their current car design concept. Wolff told Sky Sports F1:

“We gave it our best go over the winter and now we all just need to regroup.”

He continued, “the moment comes when the stopwatch comes out and that showed us that we are not good enough.”

So, what is Mercedes’ plan moving forward? Will they make a change to their car concept mid-season like Aston Martin did last year?

On the Thursday before the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend, Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton seemed to suggest that a radical change like Aston Martin’s (last year) is not possible for the Silver Arrows. The seven-time world champion was asked by Sky Sports F1 whether Mercedes had a Plan B. He responded:

“I saw those people talking about a Plan B. There isn’t a Plan B. It’s complete rubbish.”

Hamilton went on to blame the cost cap for the German team’s inability to develop a Plan B concept.

However, following his team’s lacklustre performance in Bahrain, Wolff seems to suggest that Mercedes do have a Plan B up their sleeves.

Wolff reveals Mercedes has already trialled a new concept in their wind tunnel

Following the Bahrain Grand Prix, Wolff spoke to the Austrian media outlet ORF. During the interview, he seemed optimistic about his team’s ability to change their car concept. On the alternative concept, Wolff said:

“It’s also been done in the wind tunnel, but it’s not just about the side pods or how the car looks from the outside. We have to dig into the data and decide which direction to go in.”

The Mercedes boss also brought up how “Aston Martin took that decision, and they came back strong.” Referring to when Aston Martin changed their car concept mid-season in 2022. Wolff went on to say that it is Mercedes’ “ambition” to do the same.

ORF indicated that in the “best-case scenario,” Mercedes could have the new car ready for the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. If they do have a Plan B up their sleeve, when could we see it take to the track?

Feature Image Credit: formula1.com

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