Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton is trailing Sebastian Vettel by one point in the Drivers' championship. In this picture, Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP prepares to drive in the garage during practice for the Canadian Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, Canada, June 8, 2018. Charles Coates/Getty Images

Lewis Hamilton insists Formula 1 is going in the “wrong direction” after criticizing the new engine rules that limit every driver to a maximum of three power units for the entire season.

The limit on the engines was four during the 2017 season, but it was reduced by one for the current campaign despite two more races being added to the calendar. This means all the drivers will have to use one power unit for at least seven races failing which they will have to take a grid penalty.

The Mercedes driver was forced to use his six-race-old engine at the recently concluded Canadian Grand Prix and struggled with its performance during the race. The Gilles Villeneuve Circuit is power sensitive and the Silver Arrows team were the only one among the top three teams – Ferrari and Red Bull Racing being the other two – not to use an upgraded power unit.

Hamilton could only manage fifth place during the race, which saw him lose his lead in the Formula 1 Drivers’ world championship. Despite it being later revealed that it was an engine cooling issue rather than an issue with the power unit itself, the driver feels that the sport is going in the wrong direction.

The four-time world champion is hoping they do not reduce the engine allocation to two next season and believes F1 was more fun when they had more power units at their disposal. Moreover, the former McLaren driver does not want the championship to be decided based on reliability.

Hamilton also made reference to the new owners of the sport — Liberty Media — wanting to reduce costs, which brought about the reduction in engine allocation. However, the Briton believes it is actually increasing the costs as all the manufacturers are spending more money on Research and Development to make the power units more reliable without compromising performance.

"I hope they don't go to two engines next year because it's just going to get ridiculous," Hamilton said after the race on Sunday, as quoted by ESPN. "It was definitely a bit more fun when you had more engines I would say.”

"The fact that a season can sway through reliability, I don't think anyone wants to see that. I don't think anyone wants to be cheated of that. You want actual true performance," he said.

"The sport is going in the wrong direction in my opinion. I have so many different opinions about it. They needed to fricking change these bleeding engines to save costs and then they spend more to produce it,” the Mercedes driver added.

Hamilton is expected to receive his second power unit of the season at the upcoming Grand Prix at Circuit Paul Ricard in France on June 24. It was expected in Canada, but a quality issue made the reigning Constructors’ champions postponed its introduction.

However, Mercedes F1 team principal Toto Wolff was not willing to confirm it until they run the final diagnostics during free practice on Friday in France. They are hoping the issues will be fixed as they cannot afford to lose more ground to their rivals.

"I don't want to say too much because we were expecting to have the engine here but then on the last long run we spotted a potential issue," Wolff said. "We want to have it in the car Friday morning, run it without problems, then confirm that it's all OK."