Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2023

Mercedes’ upgrades yielding success ‘we haven’t felt for a long time’ – Wolff

2023 F1 season

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Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff says his team feels happier with their performance than they have for a “long time” thanks to their recent upgrades package.

The team that dominated Formula 1’s V6 turbo era for so many years have only enjoyed one grand prix victory since the technical regulations revolution at the start of 2022.

However, Mercedes currently sit second in the constructors’ championship on 167 points behind leaders Red Bull, 13 points ahead of closest rivals Aston Martin. Since introducing their first major upgrades package in Monaco, drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell have combined for 71 points – more than any team besides Red Bull.

Wolff says the apparent success of the Mercedes’ upgrades is having a positive impact within the team.

“I think we can see the positive dynamic literally cascading, transcending, into the organisation,” Wolff said.

“We feel that the car is coming together, we see that our data yields results on-track and we haven’t felt that since a long time. That obviously contributes to this place being in a very good place.”

Mercedes have begun to move away from their car’s core design concept after the W14 had a disappointing start to the season relative to the team’s ambitions. Despite the limitations of F1’s financial regulations and aerodynamic testing restrictions, Wolff says he is confident Mercedes can make major changes to their 2024 car with what they have available to them.

“We have set up a huge organisation in our financial department of 46 people that monitors the cost cap down to the last screw,” Wolff explained.

“We look at the trend of our expenditure over all of the year. And what we’ve done is basically allocated resource to various projects. We’ve stayed below that line all year last year and we’re still below that line this year. That considers a ‘normal’, let’s say, development switch for next year and this is still pretty much on track.

“The good thing is that we’re constantly learning about what the car is doing. There is going to be some fundamental design changes for next year, but it’s not that we are building stuff. It’s more like ‘what we are simulating?’. But that is not measured in either money nor teraflops, nor wind tunnel hours.”

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Author information

Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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21 comments on “Mercedes’ upgrades yielding success ‘we haven’t felt for a long time’ – Wolff”

  1. Is the 46-person cost cap monitoring department outside of the cost cap?

    1. isthatglock21
      25th June 2023, 17:59

      Amazing it took them this long. Fact they spent 1 full year doing nothing but data collection whilst at the same time having incorrect simulations & tools up until recently is just hilarious. Amazed they were even as competitive as they were. Eventually stuck with that idea for too long, threw it all away. Making such a change 2 months in the new year when you’re very limited & waste 1 full year learning less than you could is insane, I can see why Lewis is holding out over the contract seeing as clearly they disregarded most of what he had to say

  2. These new regulations are horrible in my opinion. The cars were already big and heavy enough in 2021, now they’re absolutely collssal! And I am of the opinion we had better racing in that year throughout the whole field than anything we’ve seen since the beginning of 2022.

    1. You’re wrong. The cars are smaller now – as they have become significantly shorter. The bigger tyres make them appear larger and the large bulges on the engine cover make them thicker. But the cars are not bigger, but smaller.

  3. They look wider and are definitely heavier and the bigger rims make the cars look odd.

    1. Still the same 2m width. The length is now limited to 5.5m, before some were about 5.7m long.

    2. The plans are to get them lighter down to 750kg and a tad smaller.

  4. I am so tired of demagogic Toto. He should become politician.

    1. You think there’s no politics in Formula 1?

      That’s adorable.

      1. grat, no, it’s that you’re talking to the sort of poster who has convinced themselves that the best way to show the purity of their support for Red Bull is to constantly and obsessively hate anything even remotely associated with Mercedes. If it had been Horner coming out with a similar sort of statement, he’d be defending it like crazy.

        1. try not to take on every poster personally… its boring and childish

    2. U know you read and commented on an article about a statement of Wolff? Lol

  5. playstation361
    25th June 2023, 0:44

    True. Red Bull racing also getting restive and newspaper discussions getting its first place.

  6. I didn’t want to get (dragged) into it anymore but every time this man speaks I get reminded of his tenure during the 2021 campaign and can’t still feel anything but disappointment and pity he threw every shred of credibility away (and over what? some competition?). I wish him all the best in life, that’s not the point, but would prefer not seeing or hearing him anymore because he simply reduces the joy of watching this sport for me. And he still plays his game of manipulation and politics… (and yes, other principles do it to bladibla.. sure. but I am talking about the king amongst them now)

    1. Sikhumbuzo Khumalo
      25th June 2023, 17:13

      You have just said a whole lot of nothing. You dislike Toto; fair enough. Enjoy sitting in that dislike of yours.

      1. Yeah, I expressed my opinion (if I am not very much mistaken I am not exactly the first to do so on this site). You don’t like its content, fair enough. Cheers.

    2. Just curious, why did you click on the article knowing it was an interview with Toto?
      Seems a bit strange that you don’t want to read anything from him yet here you are…

  7. Robert Henning
    25th June 2023, 14:02

    When the car actually wins races on proper race tracks on merit I will maybe believe you, Toto.

    For someone who claimed there was nothing wrong with the side pods to only change it 4 times so far, you are very believable.

    Your floor was there for public display at Monaco and it looked like the RB18’s floor, based on what people at F1Technical thought.

    I would wait till you actually have some good results.

  8. playstation361
    25th June 2023, 14:20

    It’s all fair play. I really think AM is highly overrated so was the case with Ferrari. These guys just don’t find the way to reach the podium like the leaders do. History speaks for itself.

    I just did not understand that day when Alonso like this “Just ran several seconds before everyone should in a given condition”

    It all looks very cool.

    Of couse Red Bull deserves it. The challenge is the most important part which comes into play in a win win situation.

  9. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    25th June 2023, 15:22

    The way Mercedes speaks about their current ‘plight’ you’d think they were barely able to score points and aren’t a team that only 2 years ago had won both championships back to back for many years running.

  10. Robert Henning
    25th June 2023, 17:04

    Mercedes’ press releases have been borderline embarrassing for the past two years.

Comments are closed.