F1 News

Mercedes: 'We were surprised no one else found this loophole'

Mercedes: 'We were surprised no one else found this loophole'

12-01-2023 17:13 Last update: 19:24


Mercedes caused a stir at the start of the 2022 Formula 1 season by appearing with a car without sidepods, but the W13 has done the German racing stable little good. According to technical director Mike Elliott, it is still not entirely clear to what extent the car's concept contributed to this.

Mercedes was the only team to opt for a so-called 'zero sidepod' design. According to Elliott, Mercedes were not so much surprised that rival teams had not opted for the same concept, but rather that the idea had not occurred to anyone else.

Mercedes surprised

"We were surprised that nobody else found this loophole," he said in conversation with Auto, Motor und Sport. That no rival teams subsequently appeared at the start of the season with the same concept, in turn, did not surprise Elliott. "When you have gone in a certain direction, it is very difficult to copy something else."

In the end, the W13 did not prove to be a successful car for the German racetrack, but to what extent that can be attributed to the concept is still unclear, according to the technical director. "We only have a partial picture of things, we only see what our car does. It's hard to judge how the other concepts react," Elliott continued. He thinks it is not so much down to the shape of the sidepods, but more to the design of the car as a whole.