Mercedes director of trackside engineering Andrew Shovlin has outlined why this year's pre-season test is "vitally important" for F1 teams.
The sport has undergone a revolution in its regulations, with cars almost completely changed between last term and this in the hope of invigorating the racing spectacle for spectators.
With new machinery comes a clean slate on which teams can develop their cars and try to find an edge over competitors, but this starts with a learning process when testing gets underway.
"Winter testing is going to be vitally important," said Shovlin.
"There are only six days, so that is three days per driver to try and really learn everything there is to know about these cars.
"There will be a lot of work put into the correlation side, so making sure the car you put out on track is matching all of those simulations, have you got as much performance on it as you hope to have on it and then a big element of trying to understand the tyres.
"In parallel with that, we will be exploring different setup directions, so trying to get the cars into the correct working window, get them into that sweet spot for the drivers so they can really attack the lap in qualifying."
Explaining the advantages that can be carried from testing, Shovlin added: "Doing all of those together in that short period that we now have for testing is going to be a big challenge and the teams that get it right will be able to carry that learning into those early races giving them an advantage.
"Being reliable is going to be super important so more components have changed on these cars than in any year I can remember and making sure those new components are all functioning correctly, that you can keep the car on track, running, putting miles on it and learning with every mile, that is going to be absolutely vital."