Mercedes have launched the car they will hope can better the 12 race wins and 15 pole positions achieved en route to securing a fourth straight Constructors’ Championship in 2017.
Last year’s model – which delivered a fourth F1 title for Lewis Hamilton – was playfully nicknamed a “diva” due to its unpredictability, but Mercedes have been busy ironing out technical issues to build the new W09 – or Mercedes-AMG F1 W09 EQ Power+ to give the elaborate full name.
As well as changes to the chassis, Mercedes have significantly upgraded their power unit, with the Silver Arrows boldly declaring that the latest model “is improved in every area over its predecessor”.
Valtteri Bottas gave the car its first run during a launch day at Silverstone on Thursday, albeit the Finn says it is too soon to judge on a damp track.
All of the lights! How about that for an entrance!! #DrivenByEachOther #F1 pic.twitter.com/xg1HL5wRWi
— Mercedes-AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) February 22, 2018
“The conditions are what they normally are at Silverstone at this time of the year, but everything was working well,” he said. “The car felt good and the engine was running well, so it’s a start.”
Here comes the W09… @MercedesAMGF1 #Unleash2018 #F1 pic.twitter.com/DgIHEoX5Rp
— Formula 1 (@F1) February 22, 2018