The faulty engine which robbed Lewis Hamilton of victory on Sunday has arrived back in the UK as Mercedes desperately try to resolve the mechanical problems which have derailed his title defence.
Hamilton, who is currently in Tokyo ahead of this week’s Japanese Grand Prix, was on course to win in Malaysia and take back control of the championship before his engine blew up with 15 laps to go.
That marked the third time his grand prix weekend had been scuppered by an engine problem this year, while Nico Rosberg, his Mercedes team-mate and sole title rival whom he now trails by 23 points, is yet to encounter any major mechanical dramas.
The engine was sent from Kuala Lumpur to Mercedes’ headquarters in Brixworth, where it will now undergo a thorough analysis. Mercedes have so far been unable to understand why Hamilton’s engines keep failing. The Briton, 31, even suggested that he would consider skipping some practice sessions at the remaining five rounds in the hope of avoiding further problems.
“We want to come to a race and have a more reliable situation,” Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said.
“We will leave no stone unturned to check the engines for the next races. We are forensic. Whatever needs to be done will be done. There is no explanation. It’s a freaky situation that has no rational explanation.”
Meanwhile, Mercedes, are set to enter Formula E after taking up an option to join in 2018.
Renault, Audi, BMW and Jaguar are all among 10 teams who currently take part in the electric series which was conceived four years ago. “We have been watching the growth of Formula E with great interest,” Wolff added.