Mercedes will introduce its first engine evolution of the year this weekend at the Austrian Grand Prix 2020.
Mercedes has been working on a specification update ever since, which has been readied for introduction in time for the first of two races at the Red Bull Ring with F1 finally resuming after the delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
While Mercedes once again left Barcelona testing appearing the team to beat, its otherwise strong pre-season programme was hampered by a series of reliability problems relating to its engine.
Mercedes got through two engines during the first week of pre-season testing when Valtteri Bottas suffered an electrical issue, while Hamilton’s running on the penultimate day was curtailed as he ground to a halt after just 14 laps.
Mercedes is coming in with an engine update for the season start in Austria. According to The Race, the update is mainly related to reliability: the engine suffered several problems during the test days in Barcelona.
During the test days, Toto Wolff’s team had to use no less than three power units in eight days. Reliability seemed hard to find and could become a major problem when starting in Australia. Due to the late start of the season, Mercedes has now had the time to make an update.
Earlier it was confirmed that Honda will also appear with an update on the Red Bull Ring. Both Honda teams, Red Bull and AlphaTauri, will come into action on the home track of the “Bulls” with a 1.1 version of their engine.
It is expected that the Honda engine has made great steps forward and can focus on competing with Mercedes, which has been dominant for years. We will see how close the teams are next weekend, at the long-awaited start of the season in Austria.
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F1 2020 NEXT RACE
|Anniversary GP||9 Aug|
|10h00 - 11h30||Free practice 1|
|14h00 - 15h30||Free practice 2|
|11h00 - 12h00||Free practice 3|
|14h00 - 15h00||Qualification|
|14h10 - 16h10||Race|