Mercedes W14 Side Pods

The sidepod design of the Mercedes W14 remained the most unique and spectacular among all the other cars on the Formula One grid of 2023. Although the German squad brought the zero pod concept for the first time in 2022 in the W13 car following their ritual of innovating new things. But what happened with Mercedes last year is known to all. Despite this, Mercedes continued with the sidepods design this year, accepting that the concept was not responsible for the defeat.

However, Mercedes had an option. They could have copied Red Bull’s design. But they did not. And now, they need to. They clearly need to bring a change. Their unique zero pods are not saving them from drowning. Apparently, the change may bring a ray of hope for the Silver Arrows if the sidepod of the W14 will get changed. And looks like another “very different sidepod is coming,” as explained by the engineer Mike Elliott.

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Mercedes W14 At Sakhir International Circuit, Bahrain

With the season’s first competition at the Bahrain Grand Prix, fans got clear with one fact: whatever the concept Mercedes brought in the W14, it’s not working. The team boss Toto Wolff too, agreed with the fact when he said, “we are in the wrong direction.” However, he has assured of a different car in the next Grand Prix, following several upgrades and developments they are implementing. The first noticeable change that will be brought to the new Mercedes car will be the ‘sidepods’ concept. Mike Elliott has explained how that will be envisioned and what will replace it.

Changing The Special Sidepod Design, Confirmed by Mike Elliott

Speaking about changing their unique zero pods, which saved Mercedes pride for not copying Red Bull, Mike Elliott said, “Mercedes have a got a very different side pod coming.” “It’s very different,” he repeated thrice about the new development, which as per him, is very different from the previous side pods.

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Mike Elliott (Mercedes Engineer)

Unfortunately, Lewis Hamilton and George Russell finished fifth and seventh at Bahrain GP, surpassed by Aston Martin and Ferrari. However, during the press conference on Saturday, Mike Elliott came out to reveal the big plans of Mercedes, including the side pods. This may bring them back into the title contention. When he was asked to reflect on his thoughts on the concept change, he was a little obvious with the fact that they have talked about it several times before too. Last year Mercedes developed the car, and now too, it is looking at other ways to overcome the problems. But will it be a long-term solution? “We are going to find that out,” he said.

Mercedes Is Not Copying Red Bull’s Idea Of Side Pods, Brining Another Unique Concept

Mike Elliott further explained that the team’s boss had already announced that a “different bodywork is coming.” However, if you are in doubt that in the desperation of winning, Mercedes will copy Red Bull or any other. Then please know that they will never do such a thing. Elliott specifically said, “It [the new side pod design] will not be the same as other people. And also it won’t be the same as we had” IT WILL BE DIFFERENT.

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Team Mercedes

Meanwhile, Mike Elliott pointed out some of the restrictions that are limiting the team from bringing required developments. He named ATR [Aerodynamics Testing Restrictions] as a problem. The team needs to get back on the right path. And this right direction, the correct decision, is not something that is figured out with just one race. It may take time. At present, Mercedes is nowhere near “trying to make that sort of decision,” said Elliott.