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Mercedes power unit woes not down to Cowell exit - Wolff

Mercedes power unit woes not down to Cowell exit - Wolff

F1 News

Mercedes power unit woes not down to Cowell exit - Wolff

Mercedes power unit woes not down to Cowell exit - Wolff
Ian Parkes & Sam Hall

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has dismissed suggestions the team's recent reliability problems are down to the departure of former High Performance Powertrains managing director Andy Cowell.

Cowell led the development of Mercedes' all-powerful hybrid power unit until his departure at the end of last year with Hywel Thomas instilled as his replacement.

The current season has seen all but two of the eight Mercedes-powered drivers hit by grid penalties for taking engines over the prescribed limit of three, with Valtteri Bottas suffering the most and now on his sixth.

"The strength of the organisation is its depth and Andy is clearly an exceptional personality who contributed in his day but so is Hywel, and everybody alongside him," said Wolff.

"I have 100 per cent confidence in the structure we have today.

"Engine developments are not something that happens overnight but it has long lead times when things go right and things go wrong."

Bottas was forced to the back of the grid in both Russia and Italy following wholesale changes to the power unit before solely taking another internal combustion engine in the last race in the United States. Team-mate Lewis Hamilton also took a new ICE only in Turkey.

Wolff has previously conceded to there being a "batch problem" with Mercedes PUs but refused to point the finger of blame for the issues at any individual.

"Clearly, Andy was a massive part of our past success, so was Hywel and everybody else," added Wolff.

"So I don't think you can pinpoint it to one of the leaders deciding to leave the organisation. There is still a really profound strength within it."

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