F1: Mercedes unveiled the all-black W14 race car on Wednesday, revealing their bold new look for this year. The eight-time constructors' champions have chosen to let the carbon-fibre weave speak for itself rather than painting their car black. The former world champions are ready to reclaim the throne this year by competing against Red Bull with drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell after two bad seasons for the team. While Mick Schumacher, a former Haas driver, will join the team as the reserve driver this season, Toto Wolff will remain the team's principal. In the 2020 and 2021 seasons, the Mercedes W14 adopted a black livery to represent the team's anti-racism message before returning to silver in 2022. The new black livery also includes functional improvements that will help the team reduce overall weight by exposing more carbon fibre. The car also receives numerous upgrades over the W13 as the Silver Arrows team strives to return to peak form.
During his speech at the W14 launch, Toto Wolff said, "Our hopes and expectations are always to be capable of fighting for a World Championship. However, our competitors were very strong last year, and we are playing catch-up. Racing at the front requires resilience, teamwork and determination. We face up to every challenge, we put the team first and we will leave no stone unturned in the chase for every millisecond. This year, we are going all in to get back in front."
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The team will compete for both the constructors' championship and the drivers' championship in the upcoming season. In 2022, the team lost the constructors' championship, snapping an eight-season winning streak. Hamilton and Russell struggled to adapt to the new technical regulations, which resulted in a disappointing season for both the drivers and the team as a unit.
Mercedes has also kept the sidepod design from the previous season, which is now more obvious thanks to changes made to the engine cover's gulley bodywork. Other improvements include a chassis that is significantly lighter, updated front suspension geometry, redesigned cooling systems, and improved aerodynamic concepts based on lessons learned from the previous model.
Russell's performance in Brazil gave the team their lone victory of the 2022 campaign, which helped them finish third in the overall standings at the championship's conclusion. During a post-launch shakedown session at the Silverstone circuit, Hamilton and Russell each had a chance to experiment with the W14. At the Bahrain International Circuit from February 23–25, the vehicle will be tested in advance of the current racing season. March 3–5, 2023, will see the opening round take place on the same circuit.
Meanwhile, a multi-year agreement featuring the Snapdragon brand has been announced by Qualcomm Technologies and the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 team. The partnership aims to use the Snapdragon platform to develop distinctive in-person and online fan experiences. To accelerate its digital transformation and build a leading smart space at its campus in the UK, the team will look into ways to use Snapdragon and other Qualcomm technologies. The Mercedes-AMG F1 W14 E Performance also has the Snapdragon logo. The race suits worn by the drivers, the attire of senior staff, and the trackside environment of the team will all bear Snapdragon branding.
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Commenting on the occasion, Don McGuire, SVP and CMO of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. said, “Snapdragon delivers premium experiences, and our partners are best in class. The Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team is the leading tech-forward team in F1, making it the ideal partner of choice for the Snapdragon brand.” “Together, we are committed to reimagining the fan experience by bringing Snapdragon to fans around the world,” he added.
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