What are the changes to be made in W15 after Lewis Hamilton’s request? Mercedes engineer provides update

Following his ’emotional farewell’ announcement from Mercedes in 2025, Lewis Hamilton—the 7x World Champion—has started the 2024 Formula 1 season on the wrong foot, as seen in his disappointing results from the opening two Grand Prix events. He has expressed the ‘unresolved’ issues with his W15 F1 machine on several occasions this season.

However, recently, a Mercedes engineer updated on the changes slated for the W15 following Lewis Hamilton’s request.

What changes Mercedes engineer’s plan to implement on W15?

In an online interview for Mercedes, Andrew Shovlin, who is the team’s trackside engineering director, revealed the latest changes that are being made to their W15 F1 challenger after a difficult start to the 2024 season, especially from Lewis Hamilton.

Briefing on Mercedes’ plans in upgrading the W15, Shovlin started by saying, “There’s definitely data that we’re picking through from Jeddah. We’re also looking at data from Bahrain race, Bahrain test and we will come up with a plan for how we approach free practice in Melbourne.”

“But it’s not just based on what we did in Jeddah. There’s a lot of work going on within aerodynamics department, vehicle dynamics department.”

“We’re trying to design some experiments there that will hopefully give us a direction that’s good for performance,” he added.

Talking about the W15’s high-speed cornering issues, he continued, “The big one is we don’t really have enough grip there [corners]. So that’s one of the things that we are working hard on this week because Melbourne has similar nature of corners [with Jeddah circuit].”

“So, we’re doing a lot of work to try and understand why we not seemed to have the grip of some of our close competitors,” he further added, concluding the topic.

These words from Shovlin come just after Lewis Hamilton came forth to reveal the major ‘recurring’ issues in the W15 that have been plaguing the team’s performance for the past F1 seasons.

Lewis Hamilton’s assessment on Mercedes W15

In a post-race interview at the Saudi Arabia GP, Lewis Hamilton–the 7x Formula 1 champion–revealed the major ‘technical’ deficits in his W15, that have been heavily hampering his recent performances—P7 in Round 1 and P9 in R2.

Talking about his individual efforts during the race, he started, by saying “I was hunting, and I was pushing as hard as I could, I was maximizing everything I had with the car, I was right on the edge.”

“It was just unfortunately really lacking performance in the high speed, where they were walking all over us,” he added, pointing out the W15’s weakness.

Reflecting on the positives, he continued, “But there are positives. The car is good in low speed.

“We have to add a lot of loads in the high speed. I think if we were able to do that then I think it puts us in the fight, but we’ve got some work to do”, he concluded, admitting the car needs improvements.”

As for now, Lewis Hamilton will now test the W15’s ‘experimental’ upgrades at the Melbourne GP circuit on March 24 at the 2024 Australian Grand Prix.

Can the Silver Arrows really pick up the pace with the W15’s ‘experimental’ upgrades? Or will it fail to deliver at the Australian Grand Prix as well? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.


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