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Mercedes: No difference between works and customer engines

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Toto Wolff denies Mercedes was the target of the FIA's clampdown on engine parity rules, denying there as ever been any difference between its engines and those allocated to its customers.

Earlier this year, the governing body reminded manufacturers that their customers must have access to the same software and power unit modes as works' engines, with no limitations.

Customer teams must also receive the same fuel and oil specifications as works teams, unless they are commercially contracted to a specific supplier.

Many believe the technical directive dispatched to F1 teams in January was aimed at Mercedes, but team boss Toto Wolff is unaware of either Williams or Force India formulating any complaints to the FIA on the subject of customer engine parity.

"I don’t think any of our customers was pushing for it," Wolff told Motorsport.com.

"It’s not relevant for us, because the rules have been in place for a while that you must supply the customers with the same hardware and software from a power unit standpoint, and we’ve always done that."

It is a known fact that Mercedes has the ability to unlock specific engine modes, in qualifying trim for example, to gain a power advantage. But Wolff insists modes of operation are identical for all.

"Identical modes for the customers and us. There has never been any difference. They have the same mileage allowance as the works team, there is no difference whatsoever," Wolff said.
"That’s why we have no problem with that. If there is any suspicion out there, it certainly wasn’t anything that would have any consequence for us."

Wolff actually sees a benefit to engine parity for Mercedes' works team, while fuel specification is also identical.

"We have the belief that sharing modes and engine calibration among six cars triggers a steeper learning curve for us than running different engine specifications between the customers and the works team.

"We’re all using the same fuels, because we’re calibrating our engines on one spec of fuel."

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