Verstappen enjoyed a record-breaking 2022 campaign, storming to 15 victories en route to the title.

At just 25, Verstappen has 32 career victories to his name and two drivers’ titles.

Coulthard - who drove for Red Bull between 2005 and 2008 - believes Verstappen is "already one of the greats".

“Just as Lewis doesn’t need nine world titles for me to consider him one of the greatest drivers in the sport, Max is already one of the greats. You would also have to be a f***ing idiot to claim that he only achieved this because he was in a good car,” he told

“After all, none of his teammates have been able to measure up to him. Max is a beast on the track, a winning machine who doesn’t give a sh** about what we have to say or what anyone else has to say. He’s unbelievable.”

Despite Verstappen and Red Bull’s dominant campaign, Coulthard warned that the success could come to a sudden halt.

“The Verstappen era may be over after two titles, not because he’s not a brilliant driver, but he may not have a title-winning car in the coming seasons. Nobody knows that in advance,” he added.

“Lewis could have been a nine-time instead of a seven-time F1 champion. At the same time, he has often been in a good car, and someone like [Fernando] Alonso has not.

“Alonso should have had more than two titles but his choices and the racing gods have put him in the position where he will drive for Aston Martin next year and the chances of him becoming champion are slim.”

Verstappen will look to win a third consecutive driver with Red Bull in F1 2023, matching Sebastian Vettel’s achievement from 2010 to 2012.

After a strong end to the year, Mercedes will be hoping to hit the ground running with George Russell and Lewis Hamilton.

Ferrari showed impressive pace at times but struggled to capitalise on it.