Toto Wolff says the team orders row in the Hungarian Grand Prix has masked major reliability problems at Mercedes.

While headlines have been made by Lewis Hamilton ignoring Mercedes' request to let team-mate Nico Rosberg by, Wolff has revealed that Rosberg was only behind Hamilton in the first place due to a brake-by-wire failure which lost him positions earlier in the race. Speaking to the official Mercedes website, Wolff said the team needs to focus on providing two reliable cars and then the drivers will be free to fight it out.

"At the start of the season, Paddy and I agreed a clear policy with the drivers that they are free to race for the win - as long as they are fighting for it," Wolff said. "Equally, we have been clear that our priority as a team is always to give ourselves the best chance of winning the race - no matter which driver is fighting for it.

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"The calls Paddy and the team on the pit wall made on Sunday were completely in line with our policy. And so, our drivers will continue to be free to race for the remainder of the 2014 championship; and they will be racing to win.

"However, we should also be clear-sighted about the situation: this debate about team orders is obscuring our real problem at the moment, which is reliability. If we give the drivers the opportunity to use the full potential of the car on every lap, then we have the performance to race at the front of the field - and they will be free to race for the win without external factors playing a role. We haven't done that recently and that has given us some headaches. But those problems can be avoided if we do a better job."

And Wolff revealed both drivers had hit problems in Hungary which the team thought would spell the end of their races.

"It was nerve-wracking. With each car, there was a point when we didn't think they could finish. For Nico, it was behind the first Safety Car when it looked like the brake system had failed. With Lewis, it happened when he started losing fuel pressure - and power - as he was running behind Fernando [Alonso], with Nico closing in. At that point of the race, we were hoping he could make it to the finish - but we certainly expected the problem would be terminal."