Hamilton thrilled with feel of new Mercedes F1 vehicle

Hamilton thrilled with feel of new Mercedes F1 vehicle

And Hamilton believes the new cars are a step in the right direction for Formula 1, saying new owners Liberty Media now have the potential to improve the sport in many areas.

Asked to elaborate on those comments, Hamilton told Sky Sports News HQ: "Naturally, relationships never stay ideal".

Hamilton, speaking at the launch of the new Mercedes auto on Thursday, said the experience of losing to teammate Nico Rosberg last season has made him better.

"I would still say, (reliability) is a little bit of our Achilles Heel at the moment; performance-wise we're looking good, but we have to make it last, so at this stage I won't say that I'm comfortable. If we see overtaking is worse, it's going to be worse for the fans, the spectacle will be worse so I'm hoping that's not the case".

He added: "My feelings from previous year are not lingering - I've moved on".

"But you soon move past it, you move on".

Over the last three years, Hamilton and Rosberg endured a tense and at times toxic relationship, with two big on-track collisions last season. He retired five days later.

American executive Chase Carey took over as CEO and along with him, commercial chief Sean Bratches and sporting head Ross Brawn will now run Formula One. "He finally got it and maybe he wanted to keep it just as it is and not risk retiring at the end of this year not being in the same position".

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"It was damp when I was out so I was on the wet tyres initially", Hamilton said.

"I've been waiting for a long time to get this auto out on track and, although this is just a filming day, I'm looking forward to starting to test properly next week in Barcelona and to really understand the vehicle that we've been given by everybody in Brixworth and Brackley".

Former Williams driver Bottas said: "I've never driven a auto with that much downforce".

However, Lewis Hamilton feels that they need to look beyond the commercial aspect of the sport and speak to the fans and see what they want.

"I don't know how long I will stay, but I am still competitive, still hungry and still driving at my best".

Speaking at the launch of the W08, the team's new auto, at Silverstone yesterday, Toto Wolff, the head of Mercedes Motorsport, said that rules had not changed fundamentally, indicating that Bottas will be given joint-billing with his more experienced team-mate.

Lewis Hamilton and Valterri Bottas pose during the launch of the new Mercedes vehicle.

Nobody at Mercedes can be sure that they possess the machinery that is required to take them to a fourth consecutive year of total dominance in light of the new regulations, with a clearer indication of relative speeds awaiting pre-season testing in Barcelona starting on Monday.