As Formula One teams reveal their 2017 challengers, we continue to get a look at the various approaches they’ve taken to the new regulations. And we now have gotten our first look at the car Mercedes-AMG Petronas hopes can claim a fourth consecutive driver and constructor championship.
Mercedes’ two drivers Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas and team boss Toto Wolff were on hand at Silverstone Circuit on Thursday to reveal the new F1 W08 EQ Power+. The 2017 racer also is the first race car or road car to sport the company’s new EQ Power+ brand.
EQ — electric intelligence — is the electric mobility brand the German manufacturer debuted at the 2016 Paris Motor Show. But EQ Power will be the name given to all Mercedes hybrids, starting with the upcoming S-Class, and EQ Power+ will be the designation given to future Mercedes-AMG hybrid models.
Prior to the public unveiling, Hamilton took the W08 on-track for a few laps of filming.
“It felt incredible,” Hamilton said on the team’s live stream of the reveal. “(Wednesday) was the first time seeing the car come together — seeing the guys in the factory, putting this thing together — (and) I mean, it’s the most-detailed piece of machinery I’ve seen so far in Formula One.”
Bottas had to wait until after the launch event to get his first go in a “Silver Arrow,” but even before doing so, he was turning his attention to preseason testing in Barcelona.
“I’ve been waiting for a long time to get this car out on track and, although this is just a filming day, I’m looking forward to starting to test properly next week in Barcelona and to really understand the car that we’ve been given by everybody in Brixworth and Brackley,” Bottas said in a statement.
When the tarp came off, many noticed the W08 lacked a rear shark fin we’ve seen on several other cars so far. The team reportedly will test one later in the day Thursday, according to NBC Sports reporter Will Buxton.
One thing that’s very noticeable when looking at the Mercedes from the side — especially given the electric blue lines that run along the body — is how many different aero elements are working together to channel air to the back of the car. Along each side pod, for example, Mercedes has multiple large turning vanes behind several smaller barge boards, all of which will guide air toward the car’s large floor, diffuser and wing.
Thumbnail photo via Mercedes-AMG Petronas