Lewis Hamilton stated his most recent trip to Mercedes' Formula 1 factory was an “emotional” visit after the team secured second in the Constructors' Championship.
Mercedes fended off a threat from Ferrari for the runner-up spot in the championship as Red Bull dominated en route to double-championship success.
The Silver Arrows has slipped back in the pecking order ever since the introduction of new technical regulations in 2022 and endured its first winless campaign since 2011 this year.
Following the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Hamilton returned to Mercedes' two factories in Brackley and Brixworth.
“It's always quite emotional,” the seven-time World Champion told media including RacingNews365.com.
“I've been with the team for such a long time but every time you go back to Bixworth and Brackley, and you're reminded of just how big a team is pushing you forward.
“Some people that are new to the team have joined whilst I've been here, some have been here way before and also [there are] some that have worked on my engine since my first Grand Prix in Formula 1.
“It's amazing to see just the progress and the growth. Our team is becoming more and more diverse, which has been really like pleasing for me to see that we are moving in the right direction.“
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Mercedes mood 'positive' after 2023 season
Despite being unable to contend for the title for the second season running, Hamilton asserted that Mercedes is not downbeat as it looks to improved form for next year.
“I've been very busy. It's been a long, long year, but just tying up all the loose ends working with the team, just thanking everyone for the amazing work they've done throughout the year,” he said.
“So it's a special time of the year, winding down and you're seeing where we're going next.The mood is very positive.
“The team, all the members in the team are incredibly grateful to have got second in the Constructors’ [standings], given the challenges that we faced this season.”