Former Mercedes CEO Paddy Lowe has revealed that Mercedes hid the maximum engine power for most of the first year of the hybrid era for fear that the FIA would not change the rules to slow them down. Mercedes is ready to welcome the new era of Formula 1, which began in 2014 with 1.6-liter V6 turbo engines and the ERS energy recovery system, which consists of two engine generators and with which both Ferrari and Renault initially struggled.
In the first season of the new rules in 2014, Mercedes had an extremely dominant car with which they won 18 pole positions and 16 wins in 19 races, and the advantage that Hamilton and Rosberg had in qualifying was often about one second.
Lowe arrived at Mercedes in 2013 after being at Williams from 1987 to 1993 and at McLaren from 1993 to 2013, and before leaving the team in January 2017 he won three double championship titles with them. “Bernie ran around and said: +this is a nightmare, these engines are awful, ’Lowe told the Beyond The Grid podcast.
"They thought that if Mercedes looked ridiculously good then something had to be done about it." “In qualifying, we would never use full power for Q1 and Q2. And then there was the debate about how much to unscrew the engine for the Q3.
” "I would listen to Toto say 'It's too much, that's too much!' And I thought, "But if we don't win the pole, we'll look like a bunch of idiots." “So we had to pick a figure that would do the job, but we didn’t want to overdo it in the other direction.
So that was a big part of the discussions on Saturday afternoon. It was a nice conversation to have. ” "It simply came to our notice then. For most of 2014, that engine was never at full power in qualifying. ”
Lowe says the Mercedes W05 was also a very good car and that engine power was not his only advantage.
“It was also a good car, it wasn’t just an engine,” he said. "We had fantastic aerodynamics, better than all the others, which we monitored compared to the others because we would correct other people's data in relation to the engine power."
"And that car was better than any other, not looking at the engine." Hamilton and Rosberg led in as much as 86.24% of the total number of laps in the 2014 F1 season (1134 laps) - Hamilton led 495 laps, in 15 races, and Rosberg 483 laps, also in 15 races.