Lewis Hamilton Mercedes Examining McLaren's Car MCL60
Lewis Hamilton Examining MCL60 Source: PlanetF1

Mercedes had a pretty tough couple of years on the grid. They have managed to win only a single race in the past two years. But that win came in the 2022 Brazilian Grand Prix. Moreover, they remained winless in 2023. Other than Mercedes, if there was a team that surprised the fans the most, it was McLaren. Albeit, Ferrari was the only team besides Red Bull to enjoy a Grand Prix win success.

However, McLaren in the second half of the season was just spectacular. The only team that scored more points than McLaren in the second half of the season was Red Bull. It was the Spec B MCL60 version that made all the difference. Moreover, Red Bull’s RB19 inspired the design of the car. Lately, it seems Mercedes might be trying to copy the MCL60 design. 


McLaren Exposed Attempts Of Mercedes To Copy MCL60

Lando Norris Lewis Hamilton McLaren Mercedes
Mercedes McLaren Lando Norris Lewis Hamilton Source: Sky Sports

It is really weird because both McLaren and Aston Martin are customers of Mercedes. But in the first half of the season, it was Aston Martin who were the second fastest behind Red Bull. But in the second half, it was McLaren, the second-fastest car. How two Mercedes customers were even faster than the works team? Recently, Mark Norris, the Director of Operations at McLaren, revealed that their stat of development is head and shoulder over others. Clearly, he’s proud of their growth trajectory in the last season. And he should be.

But later, Norris also added that Lewis Hamilton and Toto Wolff came to take a sneak peek of their MCL60 car. Moreover, Norris said Mercedes team members were looking at their car in Brazil. Other teams also came to check out the Papaya team’s car in front of the garage. Moreover, Norris mentioned it feels good as it puts a smile on his team members’ faces to know that they are doing something right. Those teams who ignored them in the past are now actually seeing them as real contenders.

Toto Wolff’s Team Has Been On The Backfoot Since Last Year

Mercedes W14 McLaren MCL60
Mercedes W14 McLaren MCL60 Source: PlanetF1

It has been a really confusing period for the Silver Arrows since the cost-cap era began. They thought the unique idea of zero sidepod would improve their car’s performance. But the plan backfired as the car just started to show several problems. Last year, it was the porpoising issue that ruined the campaign for Mercedes. But last season, the German team proved that they managed to reduce the bouncing problem to a great extent.

However, there were many more issues with the seat position, downforce, and, in the end, the zero sidepod concept. Later, in the Monaco Grand Prix, the Brackley team introduced new sidepods. It sure made the car better, as Lewis Hamilton mentioned the car felt better. However, it was not enough to beat the magnificent Red Bull’s RB19. The Milton Keynes team had a much stronger package. Red Bull went on to win 21 races in 2023. On the other hand, Mercedes had to settle with the P2 finish at the end of the season.