Hamilton and Bottas hit the track today for the first day of testing in Barcelona. The Mercedes W08 EQ Power+ emerged with the t-wing as launched at Silverstone last week.
Mercedes new signing Valterri Bottas was out first on mediums before moving over to softs later on, putting in over a race distance of 79 laps and a lap time of 1m 23.169, putting him just below Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel’s time of 1m 22.791.
Next up was Lewis Hamilton initially out on mediums before moving over to softs. This time the W08 now sporting a shark fin, although smaller than those seen on the other F1 teams cars launched last week, as Mercedes test a number of aero options. Hamilton finally finished the afternoon session by chalking up 73 laps and a lead time of 1m 21.765.
Of the W08, team boss Toto Wolff commented:
“The new rules for 2017 were designed to make the fastest F1 cars ever through a big increase in aerodynamic performance. They should be more physical to drive and hopefully more spectacular for the fans to watch. The proof will come in the opening races but we have probably achieved that target.
But the dominant feeling in the team right now is one of excitement – the factory is buzzing with anticipation. It has been a really motivating challenge to develop a brand new car concept and I have never seen our determination to succeed higher than it is right now.”
The W08 was built almost completely from the ground up with just 17% of components carried over from previous cars. Powered by the new Mercedes-AMG F1 M08 EQ Power+, the engine is a fraction heavier than previous power units to deal with the heavier loads and is also designed to be harder wearing.
Testing continues until March 10th ahead of the season launch in Australia on March 26th.
Allison Remzi All Images ©Paul Foster at fozzyimages.co.uk