As he enters another low prospect Grand Prix weekend, Fernando Alonso says that Honda's power unit suffers from weaknesses that go beyond its simple lack of power.
McLaren-Honda are bracing for another tough weekend in China, on a circuit which is likely to compound Honda's difficulties because of its long straight.
An aerodynamic upgrade on the team's MCL32 will perhaps offer McLaren's drivers a bit of solace in qualifying but the prospect for race day is as bleak as Shanghai's wet weather forecast.
Alonso has pinpointed the fuel consumption of Honda's V6 unit as another area of concern, with the Spanish driver forced to lift well in advance of braking zones to minimize excessive consumption.
"In Australia it was a record for us, the fuel saving," said Alonso.
"It's going to be difficult for us this year, as long as the engine doesn't improve.
"It's not [only] power, it's many things - it's reliability, it's fuel saving, and there are a lot more implications in the driving that we cannot drive normally, because we need to drive around the engine.
"It's quite difficult, it's quite hard now, to drive the car.
"You cannot do any mistake for the whole race, because any mistake in one corner in the next straight they will overtake you with the speed difference - you need to do zero mistakes.
"I don't think we are lacking deployment, compared to the opposition, it's just we have less power, so our time on the straights is much longer than the rest."
Honda is working on introducing a revised combustion engine at the Spanish Grand Prix in May, hoping the changes will help efficiency and power output.
For Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne, the changes can't come soon enough.