Hamilton says Mercedes didn't listen to him about 2023 car


Lewis Hamilton says he told Mercedes last year about the issues impacting its car's performance and made clear what he did not want to see on its 2023 challenger, but the team didn't listen to him.

Progress late last season in the wake of Mercedes' chronic porpoising issues led to the team's single win of 2022, courtesy of George Russell in Brazil.

But this year, dark clouds are hovering once again over the Brackely squad which was comprehensively outpaced by its main rivals Red Bull and Ferrari in Bahrain, but also by Aston Martin.

At the root of the issues impacting Mercedes' new-spec W14 is the car's crucial lack of downforce that disrupts its balance and causes tyre degradation.

From the outset of the car's design and Mercedes' decision to retain its zero sidepod concept, Hamilton told his team that they were on the wrong track.

"Last year, there were things I told them. I said the issues that are with the car," Hamilton told BBC Radio 5 Live's Chequered Flag podcast.

"I've driven so many cars in my life so I know what a car needs. I know what a car doesn't need. I think it's really about accountability.

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"It's about owning up and saying, 'Yeah, you know what? We didn't listen to you. It's not where it needs to be and we've got to work'," he said.

"We've got to look into the balance through the corners, look at all the weak points, and just huddle up as a team. That's what we do."

Last week in Bahrain, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff finally acknowledged its car's failed concept, and the necessity to push forward with radical changes.

While the damage is done, Hamilton believes the championship winning outfit can and will get its act together.

"We're still multi world champions, you know?" he said.

"It's just we haven't got it right this time. We didn't get it right last year. But that doesn't mean we can't get it right moving forwards."

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