Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has admitted that the team 'got the physics wrong' and 'misinterpreted the regulations' which led to their underperformance in the 2022 season.
Mercedes struggled with a host of issues throughout the season, particularly with porpoising, which gave drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell difficulty controlling the car.
As a result the team could only finish third in the constructors championship, while seven-time world champion Hamilton ended the season without winning a single race.
Speaking in an interview with The Times, Wolff stated that the team had got it wrong in its preparation, and paid the price.
He said: "We got the physics wrong. It’s no myth.
"We misinterpreted some of the regulations. We put too much emphasis on seeking performance in a car that was supposed to run on the ground, very low. But you can’t run it so low, because it [the floor of the car] was hitting the ground.
"So we had to lift it up, which changed things again. It sounds like a trivial explanation, but this is the reality.”
Wolff has no regrets over not 'meddling'
Wolff was also asked if he wished he had intervened a little more in the development process in the build-up to the new season, but the 51-year-old added that the degree of trust and autonomy handed to his mechanics left them in control.
He added: "We’ve been lucky to win eight constructors’ titles in a row, which is unprecedented. And that is due to the fact that we empower the staff here. If I started to meddle in technical decisions after such a winning streak that would be odd.
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“So at that stage, I am in observer mode. I try to guide from a human perspective. Is there anything we need in additional resources? Having said that, I am responsible as the CEO and co-owner. And we, as a team, got it wrong.”