Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes “didn’t listen” when he raised concerns about the development of this season’s Formula One car.
The seven-time world champion finished fifth at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday.
Hamilton told BBC Radio 5 Live’s Chequered Flag podcast on Wednesday that last year “there were things I told them” regarding issues with the car.
“I’ve driven so many cars in my life. I know what a car needs. I know what a car doesn’t need. I think it’s really about accountability,” he said. “It’s about owning up and saying, ‘Yeah, you know what? We didn’t listen to you. It’s not where it needs to be, and we’ve got to work.’”
The 38-year-old Hamilton finished nearly 51 seconds behind race winner Max Verstappen in Bahrain.
“We’re still (multiple) world champions, you know? Just haven’t got it right this time,” Hamilton said. “Didn’t get it right last year. But that doesn’t mean we can’t get it right moving forwards.”
Last year was difficult for Hamilton as the Mercedes design badly missed the mark. It was both uncompetitive and physically difficult to drive. It developed a bouncing phenomenon dubbed “porpoising” that left Hamilton and teammate George Russell bruised and battered after every drive.