Vettel denies Ferrari unit matches Merc’s

Sebastian Vettel has rejected Niki Lauda's claims that Ferrari's 2015 engine is equal to Mercedes power.

This year's championship has once again been dominated by Mercedes who have already claimed both World titles.

But despite Mercedes' advantage on the track, non-executive director Lauda reckons Ferrari's power unit is now a match for Mercedes'.

He told Autosprint magazine: "Since they introduced the updated engine at Monza, I would say that they matched us in terms of power and efficiency.

"The 20bhp advantage we had is now gone. We are now at the same level of power: we know for certain because of the reference we have."

Vettel disagrees.

"As a fact we are not yet a match otherwise this season would have been very different," he said during Thursday's press conference for the Brazilian GP.

"But I'm very happy with the season so far, with the progress we've made, and also with the things I think we have in the pipeline for the future."

He was, however, buoyed to hear that the Austrian has been speaking about the challenge Ferrari poses as that means he has some concerns.

"Now Niki is usually is not the best one to trust as he changes his opinion very quickly. Sometimes what he says makes sense and other times it doesn't make any sense.

"The more he's talking about us, the better it is for us, because he can feel that maybe we're coming so hopefully that's good news."

Vettel remains realistic about Ferrari's chances of beating Mercedes next season.

This year he looks set to finish third in the standings unless he can pull back Nico Rosberg's advantage of 21 points in the final two races.

And while next year looks "promising" for Ferrari, he concedes no one knows what may happen next season.

"It is always difficult to predict what is going to happen but surely it is our target.

"Surely I can see what is happening in the background, the work that has gone into this year, and the work that is going in to next year, back at the factory in Maranello.

"It looks promising, and we should be able to make a good step forward.

"But the most important day is when you put the car on the track and see what it does. We have two races left and ideally we want to get the best possible results here and in Abu Dhabi."

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