Lewis Hamilton braced for another winless year as Mercedes to switch focus to 2024

Mercedes are currently the fourth fastest team on the grid after the first round of the 2023 season.

Heading into the 2023 season, Mercedes were expected to be a team reborn, having limped to a third-place finish in last year’s championship.

The W13 was a car that will haunt Mercedes forever, with its major porpoising problem and general lack of performances making the car well below the usual standards of the Silver Arrows.

Under the new regulations, the team tried to do something different and adopt a zero sidepod design, an approach which was not followed by any of the other big teams.

Fans were shocked to see the W14 drive out of the garage in pre-season testing with the same sidepod design, with Mercedes clearly believing that this was not one of the reasons for their poor performances last year.

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The Silver Arrows have unfortunately already been proven wrong, with the team dropping behind Aston Martin in the pecking order so far this year despite sharing the same power unit.

This means that Mercedes’ car design is inferior to Aston Martin’s, who have adopted Red Bull’s approach.

Shockingly, it has now been reported by the Italian edition of Motorsport.com that Mercedes are already thinking of writing off 2023 and focusing on 2024.

The W14 is so far behind the pace of Red Bull that a title challenge looks highly unlikely this year, leaving the team to contemplate giving up this year and getting a huge head start on 2024 already.

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Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has admitted that his team have got it massively wrong with the W14 design already, leaving the team with no choice but to change their approach in the coming months.

Upgrades are already in production that will see the W14 head down a different development pathway however, these upgrades are not set to be available until F1 heads to Imola in a few rounds’ time.

Something drastic needs to change if Mercedes are to be able to compete for race wins again, meaning that getting a head start on 2024 may not be the worst idea for a team who are pretty much already out of contention for the 2023 championship.