Mercedes become the latest team to reveal their 2023 Formula 1 car after the W14 broke cover ahead of a shakedown run at Silverstone.
Race drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell were joined by new reserve signing Mick Schumacher to reveal a black W14, the car they hope will put them back in the championship fight.
Last season Mercedes finished third in the Constructors’ Championship, the Brackley squad over 200 points behind Red Bull with their bouncing W13.
But, as 2009 World Champion Jenson Button put it, “they’re still third so, if that’s a bad year, they’re doing something right.”
The new car, an evolution of last year’s W13 with Mercedes having learned many a hard lesson, retains the zero-pod design of its predecessor.
Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff hinted last season already that the team would continue with the philosophy, saying the team had to “find our own path, because if you want to win, and you want to win races and World Championships, you don’t get there by copying everyone else’s design.”
Thus the zero-pods were handed a reprieve.
The other innovation Mercedes brought to the party last season was the design of the slot gap separators on their front wing, the team displaying that in the Austin pit lane.
That, though, was banned with the team forced to make changes before running it in FP1 at the Mexico City Grand Prix.
The reasoning behind that was that the rules at the time stipulated that the separators could not deliver an aero boost, they were primarily for mechanical, structural or measurement reasons.
This year the word ‘primarily’ has been removed.
Both of the 2023 race drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell will take part in a shakedown at Silverstone on Wednesday as the W14 gets its first laps of running.
According to tech boss Mike Elliott, the changes are “all in the detail. The key bits are we’ve completely changed the suspension to help with the handling.
“There are significant changes in the bodywork, although the core stayed the same.”