ringo wrote: ↑
Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:50 pm
I think Ferrari ICE has been the strongest from last year. This year they improved drivability and their ERS. It appears, to me and some others, that the ferrari PU is slightly better this year. Stronger ICE, and good enough ERS to give it a slight edge. It's not blasphemy to think that merc has lost the lead in the engine.
This is quite contrary to what i have been reading. Putting aside sheer "power", AMuS believes the Mercedes still has superior energy recovery and thus they think a slightly bigger advantage will emerge during the race when fuel efficiency will be an important factor. Given "power" is directly linked to efficiency and the recovery process, it wouldnt be farfetched to think that Mercedes would be ahead there too.
I personally think Mercedes is quite a bit ahead in this departement, and when you are, like they have been since 2014, this carries over in more headroom to perfect the package. And with package, i also mean requirement for cooling, packaging as in size and space requirement that can lead to an aero/chassis advantage. I suppose it's hard to judge, but given their shockingly good reliebilty in 2014, 2015 and last year and not to forget their sizeable advantage in overall car performance vs their nearest competitor, i wouldnt be at all surprised if the reasons you think Ferrari might have already had a PU on par last year was because Mercedes was effectively masking their performance by running in slightly detuned modes and controlling the pace from running ahead in clean air.
We only ever saw glimpses of how strong the Mercedes unit is in QF (when running that very potent mode) and perhaps during points in the race for very short durations, like overtaking or when both their drivers were pressing buttons and using modes they shouldnt have when fighting for position.
IMHO what makes it so hard to compare power units, is because its always effectively a trade off vs fuel usage and reliability. A car with more outright power and better efficiency could also use that to run more downforce, giving the impression of superior aero and masking some of that performance.
In regards to this year; given the longer wheelbase of the Mercedes, couldnt one assume they have gone this route for more downforce and therefore drag (and maybe weight given it is 5kg overweight) at the expense of a bit of engine performance giving the impression that the Ferrari unit is closer matched?