Sebastian Vettel has refused to publicly compare Mercedes’ Formula 1 power unit to Ferrari’s out of respect to the two engine manufacturers.

The four-time world champion previously drove Renault and Ferrari’s power units during the turbocharged hybrid era but following his switch to the rebranded Aston Martin team for 2021, he has now had his first experience of Mercedes’ class-leading engine.

Mercedes has won every single championship on offer since the current generation of power units were introduced in 2014 but following his first time driving the German manufacturer’s engine, Vettel was keen not to disclose any detail.

Asked to describe how the Mercedes power unit compared to Ferrari’s, Vettel replied: “It’s obviously different but I’m not going to compare, just out of respect to different manufacturers.

“It’s something that I’ve never done in the past and I won’t do now.”

After turning in 51 laps on a productive first day of pre-season testing in Bahrain on Friday, a gearbox issue restricted Vettel to just 10 laps on Saturday morning.

The German said he is eager to “make up lost ground” when he gets back in the car for the final time before the start of the season on Sunday afternoon, with Vettel still adapting to the AMR21.

"The last 24 hours have certainly been very busy for myself, for everyone in the garage, for the whole team,” Vettel said on Saturday afternoon.

“Unfortunately we didn't have a very productive morning [on Day 2], we had an issue with the gearbox we had to change and that cost a bit of time.

"That's what happened and unfortunately we didn't get a lot of laps in. So this morning was not of great use in terms of track time.

"Yesterday [Day 1] though was very interesting. The car feels very promising but there's still a lot of things I need to get used to.

“The car is different to what I ran [last year] and it's a different power unit as well so everything feels a bit different and takes a little bit of getting used to."

 

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