Mercedes F1 team says new car is more different than it looks

Mercedes says its new Formula 1 car is more radical than it appears from the outside

The new F1 W06 ran in public for the first time at Jerez in Spain last week, with the design looking like a straightforward evolution over its title-winning predecessor.

However, Mercedes engineering director Aldo Costa has revealed that, underneath the bodywork, the car is more different than it looks.

"This year's car is an apparent evolution," he said in an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport. "The truth is that it's very different in many components that you can't see from the outside.

"The results of the first tests in Jerez have been positive under every aspect.

"The improvement compared to 2014 is there and is in line with what we had expected, even though we didn't go to Spain to verify performance, but rather reliability and car behaviour."

That focus on ironing out problems is why Costa has admitted that Mercedes remains cautious that it has ticked off the reliability issues that overshadowed its 2014 campaign.

"We are still working on that," he said. "We aren't 100 per cent satisfied because some problems have arisen.

"So, I'd say our reliability is an open chapter we need to improve upon."

Mercedes plans to introduce mechanical updates to its car for the second test at Barcelona, with an aero upgrade scheduled for the final test.

Costa added: "We have set for ourselves conspicuously higher objectives compared to last season.

"With the current uncertainties, however, every scenario is possible.

"We may have several competitive cars, all within one to 1.5 seconds, just like we may have a situation similar to 2014."

*Translation by Michele Lostia

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