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The Mercedes looked good and ran well
When Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg pulled the wraps off the Mercedes W05, the first pleasant surprise was that it looked good.
Coming after some rather shocking-looking chassis launches before, Mercedes designers found a way of interpreting the new aero regulations to progressively slope the nose without adding any ugly appendages.
The proof, as they say, is in the pudding—it’s one thing to look nice but another entirely to run well. Aside from a rather alarming front-wing failure that saw Hamilton clatter into the barriers on the opening morning, Mercedes racked up substantial mileage over the four days and were always near the top of the time sheets.
Still in the embryonic stages of testing the new 1.6-litre V6 turbocharged engines, reliability was always the priority and Mercedes clocked up more mileage than any other team with Rosberg even managing a race simulation run on the final day.
Speaking after the testing, Rosberg told Autosport:
With reliability and everything, it's been a decent mark up to now. I'm very pleased with that because that was the most important thing for this test.
It did start quite tough for us, but the team did a really good job to turn it around and now we've really got the kilometres going with lots of laps.
Nothing is at potential, not even the driver because it's just important to do a lot of kilometres and then we'll push in Melbourne. Well we're always pushing for performance as well but the focus at the moment is on reliability, and then slowly but surely it needs to shift.