The tight Hungaroring track’s dynamics leaves the Silver Arrows expecting a troublesome weekend after title rivals Ferrari looked far quicker than them in Germany last time out.
Sebastian Vettel’s mistake, spinning off into the barriers when he led unopposed, and each team’s strategy calls as they reacted to rain allowed Hamilton to finish first to negate their power deficit, despite starting 14th.
Hamilton’s Hockenheim triumph means Mercedes go into the final race before the mid-season break leading both championships once again – albeit at a circuit where they have struggled in years gone by.
Last year, Vettel finished near half a second quicker than Hamilton in qualifying as Ferrari earned a front-row lockout and converted it into a one-two finish the next day.
Mercedes have only won in Hungary once in the last four years with Hamilton finishing off of the podium in two of the last three races here.
And the 33-year-old is well aware of the threat that Ferrari, and also Red Bull – whose high-downforce chassis should suit this circuit – will pose.
“This weekend is going to be the same challenge it is every year,” he told reporters.
“We’ve got the Red Bulls – it is not a power circuit and they are quite often close. Ferrari were quickest here last year.
“It is probably going to be the same this weekend. Ultimately we are going to try our hardest to improve on that. We hope that our car is better on this type of circuit [than it was before].
“Maybe tomorrow we will get in the car and we will have great pace; the car will work really well here.
“This is a really tough track, very hot, the way the corners are laid out has not in the past been good for our car package.
“Our car likes to be on a more open circuit, more high-speed, downforce-dependency corners. This is mostly medium- and low-speed, so it will be interesting.
“I think this is might be the second hardest circuit to overtake and it’s the second tightest maybe.
“If you look at Monaco, Ferrari were ahead [of Mercedes]. It’s possible that’ll be the case this weekend but nonetheless we are here.
“I am here with the mind-set that I need to get on the front row and basically I need to be P1. That’s my goal but I don’t know what my car is going to be feeling like until tomorrow [Friday].”