Hughes suggests that it is this very unusual packaging that gives the Mercedes W05 of Lewis Hamilton et Nico Rosberg the edge over their rivals.
The Briton claims that in a highly complicated engineering accomplishment conceived over two years ago, Mercedes have successfully packaged their turbine and air compressor at either end of the V6, connected by a long shaft through the vee of the engine.
|Red arrow points at normal location of the turbine. In green, its new location.|
Hughes says that this arrangement provides significant advantages such as reduced turbo lag, improved overall performance, improved aerodynamics, feeding cooler air into the intercooler (meaning a smaller intercooler and smaller sidepods) as well as better weight distribution caused by moving the car’s gearbox forward.
It is said that Mercedes' customer teams all have the same advantage.
However, because McLaren, Williams and Sahara Force India only took delivery of their power units relatively recently, they have had less time to work the layout into their respective car designs.
However, while Mercedes' rivals are aware of the turbo advantage, they are essentially powerless to react since the development of the Power Units is frozen since February 28.