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Mercedes

Mercedes challenge was 'real departure' in 2023

An important area of the regulations presented a challenge for Mercedes this season.

Russell Hungary
Article
To news overview © XPBimages

Mercedes has explained one of the main challenges that the team had to deal with during the winter break which affected their engine development.

F1 power units have been under a development freeze since 2022, with a limited amount of changes that can be made which have an effect on performance.

Part of this is through the software that governs important elements such as the ignition timing, fuel injection, and MGU-H/K management.

From 2023 only one software version will be allowed per-season for each designated 'ECU PU' and 'ERS and PU-CE applications' which is down from five that was allowed in 2022.

Mercedes power unit challenges

High Performance Powertrains Managing Director, Hywel Thomas, explained how this became one of Mercedes main challenges in the offseason: "This is the second year of the performance hardware freeze.

"That still allowed us to do reliability upgrades over the winter and we corrected several areas we'd learned about over the previous season.

"We also had the software freeze for the first time. That was a real departure for us and took some thought on our approach to it. And then we had the challenge of getting lots of hardware together for the first hardware drop.

"We also weren't entirely sure of the sort of performance the cars would have this year, the amount of bouncing, downforce and therefore amount of full throttle time. It all seemed a bit up in the air, so we tried to keep an open mind and be ready for whatever came."

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