Mercedes technical director Mike Elliott has described the difficulty of striking a balance between old and new when creating the W13.
The Silver Arrows will seek to extend its record run of constructors' championship victories in F1's new era as radically altered regulations threaten to shake up the pecking order.
Development for the new cars began before the Covid pandemic hit back in 2020, with the implementation of the new cars delayed due to the impacts of the global response and cars carried over into 2021.
"We first started working on the regulations for the '22 car back in the start of '20 and we had done all the initial work in CFD, we had done some initial work in the wind tunnel as well, the big development items like the gearbox had started," explained Elliott.
"As covid kicked in, it became clear we were going to delay the regulations for a year and we also had the challenge that we wanted to drop the downforce for the '21 car, we felt that was a necessary direction, the cars were getting too quick, so we had to turn all of our focus back to the '21 car and it wasn't until the beginning of '21 that we could actually get back onto working on the '22 car.
"All through that, it was about trying to balance the development of the current car versus the future car, with the future car being, of course, the car we are about to run.
"One of the biggest difficulties of developing this car is about how much resource we can put into it.
"Last year, we were fighting for a championship and we needed to make sure we did a good job with that and we did a good job with this year's car.
"That was a big challenge, particularly now the regulations are such that we have a cost cap and we also have very limited runs in the wind tunnel, so we had to choose really carefully what resource we spent on the '21 car versus what resource we spent on the '22 car."