Formula 1 world champion Sebastian Vettel will get a new chassis for the Spanish Grand Prix, but Red Bull says it was long-scheduled rather than a reaction to recent form.
Vettel has twice been asked to move aside for new team-mate Daniel Ricciardo in recent F1 races when being outpaced by the Australian, amid technical problems in Bahrain and while Red Bull pondered a strategy switch in China.
Red Bull has confirmed that the German will get a different chassis for this weekend's Barcelona race, but in an interview on the team's website chief designer Rob Marshall said this was a routine move.
"Sebastian will get a new chassis for Barcelona, which was scheduled at the start of the season and then the next one will be for Dan at some time around Silverstone," he said.
Asked in the interview if the chassis change was likely to be beneficial for Vettel, Marshall replied: "It shouldn't be, as the idea is that they are all the same.
"Drivers don't always want to change them - they can get attached to a particular chassis and when they are on a good run they like to hang on to it for as long as possible!
"From our point of view we'd rather give them one or two new chassis during the season that we have been able to check out in the factory using various testing methods."
This week's AUTOSPORT magazine - available in shops and online from Thursday May 8 - includes a focus on the Red Bull team-mate battle between Ricciardo and Vettel