Niki Lauda is most worried about racing Ferrari in 2017
Mercedes are chasing a fourth consecutive F1 World Constructors’ Championship having romped to victory in 2016 by nearly 300 points.
But Lauda, himself a three-time F1 World Drivers’ Champion, believes that there will be a strong challenge from Italy this time around.
"The Ferrari looks the fastest," Lauda told German outlet Auto Motor und Sport.
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"It is like it's on rails.
"Our Mercedes is a little tighter in the corners.
“Ferrari is at the top of my list.
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Ferrari will be hoping to take the chequered flag in a first a few more times in 2017.
Mercedes have enjoyed an impressive set of performances in testing
"So far, [Red Bull] are not the big surprise.”
Red Bull finished a distant second in the constructors’ race last year although they were the only non-Mercedes team to win a Grand Prix with Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo each claiming a solitary victory.
The rest were split between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg as the pair battled it out for top honours, the German eventually triumphing by just five points.
Rosberg promptly retired and was replaced in January by Valtteri Bottas, who has impressed by matching Hamilton’s lap times in pre-season testing.
But both Mercedes drivers have admitted that Ferrari’s pace represents a significant threat to their championship aspirations.
"I think Ferrari are looking very good – they seem to be consistent and fast," said Bottas.
"We shouldn't underestimate them or Red Bull.”
Meanwhile, Hamilton said: ”Ferrari are possibly the favourites.
"We can't take our eyes off them they are doing such a great job.”