Lewis Hamilton has joked he may call a "sickie" to avoid driving the W13 for one final time at the Abu Dhabi post-season test.
Mercedes fell to third in the constructors' title to end a streak of eight consecutive championships, with the W13 proving a cruel mistress for Hamilton and the team to get to grips with.
With George Russell providing the only highlights with a pole in Hungary and a win in Brazil, Hamilton's first winless season was confirmed as he fell to sixth in the drivers' championship.
The torrid year was completed with a first mechanical failure of the campaign, bringing Hamilton's race at the Yas Marina circuit to a premature end.
The seven-time champion said he was glad the season was over with, but upon being reminded he has test duties to fulfil in the coming week, Hamilton joked: "I might be calling a sickie, [pain in] my back or something."
Asked if this was the toughest campaign of his career, Hamilton replied: "No, I think 2011 was probably the hardest year I have had, just in terms of life.
"This year is probably not the greatest, up there with the top three of the worst seasons but I think it is a much stronger year in terms of myself, how I have worked with the team and how we have all stayed united.
"I think there have been lots of plusses."
Hamilton reveals immediate focus
Hamilton and Mercedes will now turn their attention to a fightback next season with the prospect of a three-way title fight tantalising for the sport.
But as for Hamilton's immediate focus, he explained: "Right now I am thinking about the winter.
"Time with the family, building snowmen, meet day in and day out with my niece and nephew, teaching them ski and just going to have the best time with my mum, deep conversations, train and eat healthy."