Mercedes chairman Niki Lauda expects Valtteri Bottas to adapt quickly to life at Mercedes and believes this year's regulation changes will work in his favour.
Bottas replaced retiring world champion Nico Rosberg over the winter and goes into the 2017 season as Lewis Hamilton's teammate. New-look cars for 2017 mean all drivers will have to adapt to the new regulations and Lauda believes that will help level the playing field between Bottas and Hamilton.
"He does not have much time to settle in, everything is new to him as it is to us," Lauda told Auto Motor und Sport. "But Bottas has two advantages.
"Firstly, he is coming into a top team and that will make it easier for him to find his bearings.
"Secondly, we will have completely new cars this year. They are also new for Lewis, so Lewis cannot build on a car he already knows. Both of them, therefore, can develop the car from the beginning so that it suits them."
Asked when it would be fair to start judging Bottas, Lauda added: "After four races we know more."