Mercedes’ new Formula One car in flame on first test.
Lewis Hamilton’s new Formula One car was literally on fire on its first outing on the track on Tuesday after bursting into flames.
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Hamilton, who has left McLaren to join rival team Mercedes for the 2013, was not at the wheel of the car but new team-mate Nico Rosberg had to leap from the cockpit as the flames engulfed the F1W04 after 14 laps of its track debut in testing at Jerez in Spain.
An electric fault in a wiring loom was the cause of the problem, but it should be rectified in time for former world champion Hamilton to drive a Mercedes car for the first time in testing later in the week as the build up to the new Formula One season gathers pace.
Hamilton’s former McLaren team-mate Jenson Button topped the timings in testing ahead of Red Bull driver Mark Webber.
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