Mercedes is set to race with the Dual Axis Steering system it pioneered during 2020 Formula 1 pre-season testing at this weekend’s Australian Grand Prix. 

The reigning world champion squad turned heads in the Barcelona paddock in testing when it debuted the new system it has dubbed as DAS, which changes the car’s front wheel toe angle by pushing and pulling the steering wheel along the straights. 

Mercedes was given the green light by the FIA to race the system this season, though similar innovations are set to be banned from the 2021 regulations. 

Despite a potential protest from rivals including Red Bull, Valtteri Bottas appeared to confirm the system will be used for the first time during a grand prix weekend in Melbourne

“For sure we’ll be using the DAS in some of the straights,” Bottas said. 

“I don’t know in which laps and when through the sessions, but we are happy to have it in the car and we hope it can give us an advantage - we’ll see.” 

Asked if he has any concerns about potential protests over Mercedes’ DAS-system, Bottas replied: “For now we’ll have to wait for what happens. 

“Like I said earlier, we would be happy to run it, but it is up to the team to decide if tat is some sort of risk.

“The short answer is that we would like to keep it, but if they think the risk is high then we won’t run it – and that won’t be a big drama.” 

Bottas also brushed off concerns over reliability on the eve of the new season after Mercedes encountered a number of engine issues throughout the six days of testing at Barcelona. 

“It is quite normal that in testing not everything is at 100 percent and we find some issues and that’s better than finding them in the first race,” he said. 

“We had some issues, yes, we looked into them and fixed them the best we could, so we can run here with as much power as we can without reliability issues. 

"We got some good learnings from there, I feel confident and I really trust the team. Obviously, we’ll find out as the season goes on.” 

 

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