Targeting the world championship in 2012 is not realistic for Mercedes GP, according to team boss Ross Brawn.
Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche admitted last week he is not happy with the performance of the Brackley based team, currently a distant fourth in the points standings behind Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari.
“Our intention is to be better every year and it is clear that in this sense we cannot be satisfied,” Brawn told Spain’s El Pais newspaper.
“Last year we were fourth and we are again. The next step should be to fight for third or second, and then go for the title in 2013,” he added.
“You need to be going forward and when you do not, you have to know why and to change your strategy.”
He said he is not worried about Mercedes possibly losing patience.
“Mercedes knows what kind of challenge competing in formula one is and that’s why they want to prove they are capable of meeting the challenge and succeeding,” said Brawn.
“It is the most competitive and complicated championship and if winning it was easy, it would not be interesting.”
But Brawn warned that with only a couple of minor changes to the regulations for 2012, Red Bull is likely to once again set the pace.
“If you’re winning, as Red Bull are now, that is the scenario that you want,” said the Briton. “When the rules do not change there are fewer possibilities of having different interpretations of them.”
Brawn therefore said he doubts there will be “any revolutionary ideas” seen on next year’s F1 grid.
Meanwhile, he acknowledged that he was not personally responsible for the ground-breaking ‘double diffuser’ idea that was credited for Brawn GP’s title win of 2009.
“It was a Japanese engineer from (former owners) Honda,” said Brawn. “He presented it, we analysed it and found it to be viable.”