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Mercedes GP Petronas has joined its rivals by launching their 2011 challenger at Valencia, where the Silver Arrows hit the track for the first time this year. The MGP W02, as previewed by a digital rendering we posted up recently, comes with new updated livery with a lot more green in it, a nod to title sponsors Petronas. Merc calls the look “striking high-gloss airbrush effect”.

The Petronas logotype on the rear wing, sidepods and front wing are now in white with a green backing, as opposed to the previous black on silver. The new look looks really good to these eyes, do you prefer this over the old look?

Technical wise, the MGP W02 now includes the KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery) system, which returns to the sport after a year’s absence. Also new on the W02 is the adjustable rear wing, operated by the driver to boost top speed and facilitate overtaking, and of course, Pirelli tyres. The car is a result of twelve months of design and development work.


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“After our first year as the Mercedes-Benz works team, we are now seeing the benefits of our chassis group and our engine group working well together. With a good technical structure and a strengthened race engineering organisation, both at the factory and the race track, I am confident that we have done and will continue to do a better job this year in all key areas,” said team boss Ross Brawn.

“The concept development for the MGP W02 started early and we have set challenging targets for the design, combined with a robust plan to ensure that the pace of development can continue throughout the long 2011 season,” the former Ferrari man said.


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The car was fired up and Nico Rosberg completed nine laps before coming to a stop on track with a hydraulics problem. The car was fixed for Michael Schumacher to end the day with his first exploratory laps with the car. Today is Nico’s day to drive with Michael completing the programme on Thursday. The fastest man on track yesterday was World Champion Seb Vettel in his RB7, although that may not mean much at this stage.