Bernie Ecclestone believes Mercedes is going to "be the leaders" behind any changes to the current F1 regulations.

There have been growing calls from some teams for the regulations to be changed this year relating to fuel flow and the race distance after Mercedes started the season in dominant fashion. Toto Wolff called the notion of any changes "absurd" on Saturday evening, but now Ecclestone claims it will be in Mercedes' interests to instigate them.

Asked if changes need to be made, Ecclestone replied: "I think we have to, for sure.

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"I don't think the way things are at the moment are acceptable to the public. People buy ticket to come here or go somewhere else expecting to see what Formula One used to be.

"Mercedes I think are going to be behind it; they'll be the leaders. We can do these things without them particularly [losing their advantage].

"Mercedes without a doubt have done a better job. And they shouldn't be punished for doing a good job, we shouldn't change the regulations to punish them."

Pushed specifically on what he thinks need to be done, Ecclestone said: "I think they can do something about the noise, and if they need another 10kg of fuel or something ... I think everyone will agree."

However, Ecclestone dismissed the idea of shortening the distance of the race, saying: "No, that's not necessary."

Having appeared to backtrack on his opinion of the new 1.6-litre V6 turbo engines in Malaysia, Ecclestone said the power units are impressive but being run in the wrong category.

"The engines without any doubt are incredible. The amount of power they produce for the amount of fuel, but I don't think that's Formula One business. They should be I touring cars are something, but not in Formula One."