It appears as if Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes engine suffered a ‘big end bearing failure’ during the Malaysian Grand Prix, the reigning world champion coming to a standstill when he was well on his way to a certain victory with smoke and flames pouring from the rear of his Formula One contender.
The team have confirmed the failure stating that it happened without warning after just 618km of use and was ‘preceded by a loss of oil pressure’ in turn 15 of the Sepang International Circuit.
Therefore, for this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix, Lewis will revert back to the power unit he used in Singapore, while his teammate, Nico Rosberg will use his Malaysian unit.
Mercedes will also introduce revised parameters for all Mercedes engines this weekend and delay the introduction of any new engines for their partner teams.
"Planned new engines for five customer drivers this weekend will be delayed to contain further possible learning from the strip of the failed unit,” a statement read. “They will continue to use their units from Malaysia."