Arnab Bose

Mercedes Upgrading The Entire W14 Concept By Removing Sidepods

Undoubtedly, Mercedes has been through enough trouble since last year. And the main cause of their problems has been the car. More specifically, their philosophy of the W13 previous year and the W14 car this year. It was not helping them then, and it is not helping them now, either. Due to the flawed concept of zero-side pods, Mercedes has allowed Red Bull to leave a big gap between them.

Now, other teams like Aston Martin and Ferrari are looking to go past the former champions. Mercedes needs serious modifications and upgrades to the W14 car to close the gap between them and the reigning champions. It is a wonder how Aston Martin being a customer of Mercedes, has done so well with their products. But the German team has not been able to fix their car with their own products.

   

Mercedes In Desperate Need Of Upgrades To Their W14 Car

Toto Wolff James Allison Andrew Shovlin Mercedes
(L to R): Andrew Shovlin (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 Engineer with Toto Wolff (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 Shareholder and Executive Director and James Allison (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 Technical Director. 08.04.2017. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 2, Chinese Grand Prix, Shanghai, China, Qualifying Day. – www.xpbimages.com, EMail: [email protected] – © Copyright: Photo4 / XPB Images

There is a big difference between the concepts on the side pods of the two team’s cars. The Aston Martin car has got more distinctions in air flow due to its side pod design than the W14 car. Initially, at the start of the season, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff seemed hopeful about the prospect of the W14 car. He was happy because the team thought they had fixed their porpoising issue and was ready to fight for the championship. However, as it turns out, Mercedes’ boss and drivers were far away from the truth. Their customer, Aston Martin, showed them the possibilities of their own products. And to solve these issues, Wolff has brought back James Allison to the team.

With Fernando Alonso driving, Aston Martin proved that the car could go 1.5 seconds faster. That’s a big difference. Hence, Toto Wolff and his team, Mercedes, now feel like changing the side pod concept is a good idea. What Mercedes needs is not 2-3 tenths but 0.6-1 seconds race pace to win Grands Prix. Then they might think about challenging Red Bull. However, they had new problems with balance. The seat position is not right. Neither is the rear downforce which is not allowing the drivers to go full throttle. Lewis Hamilton also mentioned, “I’m not feeling comfortable in the car.”

Lewis Hamilton Looking To Find Faith In W14

Lewis Hamilton Mercedes
Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)

If Lewis Hamilton does not feel confident, then he will not be able to get the most out of the car. Despite his issues with the car Hamilton was able to help Mercedes get their first podium finish of the season. It was Hamilton’s 192nd podium finish. But the seven-time champion needs the Brackley team to get him a car to win championships. The Briton had given the team a few suggestions as to how he could feel more comfortable in the car. But Mercedes did not take those suggestions.

Now, it has been three races over already in the current season, and the Silver Arrows is far behind Red Bull. Even Aston Martin has more points than the German team currently. Ferrari is close to third place, and if things go wrong, Mercedes can fall further behind. Mercedes will need to hang on until the sixth race in Imola this year. The German team waits for special upgrades. Fans and experts wonder how those modifications are going to help.