Wolff would cut off Halo with a chainsaw

Mercedes' 2018 challenger breaks cover at Silverstone

Formula 1 legend insists Lewis Hamilton is favourite for the 2018 Championship

"It's heavy, but it's streamlined as much as it can be".

Unlike most of the 2018 F1 auto launches so far, the team not only made a presentation of its vehicle, but also did so with the assistance of drivers Valtteri Bottas and defending world champion Lewis Hamilton, who took the vehicle out for a demonstration run.

"The real magic happens underneath but every little detail matters, every part can make a difference, and this year's vehicle is a big step from last year's one".

It's Halo-shod W09, which will be driven by Hamilton and teammate Valtteri Bottas for the upcoming season, sticks to the traditional silver colours of the Mercedes brand, as well as featuring strands of turquoise and blue.

"In the whole six years that I've been here, I haven't spoken to another team once and I think that shows my commitment". The nose in the front of the auto remains the same as well, but the engine is changed, with the new powerplant being named EW Power.

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"Coming to the end of the year, Ferrari, Red Bull and us are very, very close". Last year's auto was the fastest vehicle on track - it won the most races and had the most pole positions. This year being that the cars are quicker you need to be stronger. Lewis has been with the team for six years, we are talking about extending that to a very long time.

"Across the board, this design is more elegant than previous year", he added". I have been very open with my life for several years and it is always hard to make a change because I have enjoyed being open. So last year's vehicle had a certain amount of wiggle room to adapt if we had found that we needed to move around certain aspects of the auto. "The most visible change is aerodynamic and how tight the packaging is and how closed up the bodywork is".

"The amount of change on the power unit for this year is quite considerable and driven by a number of requirements", explained Andy Cowell, Managing Director of Mercedes-AMG High Performance Powertrains. "But again we're just in no rush".

"That is the answer we all want to get, and we will go from there".

Teams now head to the Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona, Spain, for the start of the winter tests on February 26.

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