Costs linked to Formula 1's 2019 rule changes have set back Red Bull by an estimated €15m says Helmut Marko, but the theoretical performance loss due to the aero tweaks has almost already been recovered.
In a bid to promote closer racing and better overtaking, Formula 1 introduced a new aerodynamic package for 2019 that includes, among other changes; a simpler front wing and bargeboards.
However, according to Marko, Red Bull's research and simulation currently indicates that the performance level of the team's RB15 is "already at the standard" of mid-2018, while the Milton Keynes outfit is "€15million poorer", therefore calling into question the very purpose of the changes, although only track testing and a few full-blown races will offer a real picture of the rules' impact.
"We have the same [aerodynamic] data as last summer," Marko told Motorsport.com.
"By the time we get to Melbourne we'll probably be better than that.
"[But] there is now a good basis for discussion between Mercedes, Ferrari and us. We agree that regulations must not be determined by technicians.
"As soon as technicians are involved, the costs increase and everything becomes complicated. Things have to be specified."
Looking back on last year's discussions about how to improve overtaking, Marko pinned the new rule changes on Mercedes as "everyone can see how difficult it is for Mercedes to overtake when they are behind [another car]," said the Austrian.
Red Bull is scheduled to conduct a shakedown of its 2019 charger at Silverestone, a few days before pre-season testing kicks off in Barcelona on February 18.