Mercedes denies 2011 focus switch due to budget

Stephan Heublein

Mercedes GP has played down reports it has cancelled further development of its 2010 formula one car due to budget considerations.

The major German daily Bild reportedly said the Brackley based team's focus has switched to the W01's successor because this year's budget is depleted.

A team spokesman said: "Our current car is developed, and the development of the 2011 car is well underway."

It is also reported in Germany that Mercedes GP will soon have to replace its reserve driver Nick Heidfeld, because the 33-year-old is expected to commence his new role as Pirelli's permanent tyre tester within the month of August.