Ahead of next weekend’s Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, Mercedes has outlined what it hopes to achieve with the upgrades it will bring to the event.

At the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff conceded that its car concept wouldn’t bring it back to a championship-winning position. 

His comment came after the Brackley-based squad endured a difficult 2022 campaign, finishing third in the standings following a run of eight consecutive Constructors’ Championships.

Since the opening round, Mercedes has been working on fresh ideas and targeted Imola to introduce new parts.

“If we go all the way back to the test and race in Bahrain, that was where we realised that we didn’t have a package that was going to allow us to fight for a World Championship,” said Andrew Shovlin, Mercedes’ Trackside Engineering Director.

“If we continued on that same development direction, we wouldn’t end up in a position where we felt we could challenge Red Bull. 

“It was around that time that we took some decisions on how we develop the car, how the car works aerodynamically, and how we shape the characteristics of the car. 

“In essence, how it is in terms of handling for the drivers to drive. What we are going to be bringing to the track in Imola is the first step of that work. 

“This takes quite a long time to develop in the wind tunnel and you can’t just do these things overnight.”

While Mercedes hopes that the new parts will deliver stronger pace in qualifying adn the race, it understands that it is just the first step towards recovering to the front of the grid.

“The Imola package are the first steps in that direction,” Shovlin added. “We are hoping to bring other updates later in the year.

“We do hope that it is quicker, we hope that it’s better in terms of qualifying and race pace. 

“The key thing though is that we are not just looking to bring a lap time update, we are looking to head off in a different development direction.

“One that we think gives us a better chance in the long term of being able to challenge for race wins and World Championships.”

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