A file photo Photograph:( Zee News Network )
Mercedes on Tuesday offered an explanation for the delay in signing a fresh contract with Lewis Hamilton, saying both parties wanted to focus on improving the Formula One team's car.
The four times world champion and Mercedes have been talking about a lucrative new deal since last year.
However, there have been regular assurances that it is on the point of being signed.
There were reports that something would be done before the start of the season in March, but five races have gone by and there is still no announcement.
The Briton is otherwise out of contract at the end of the season.
"Obviously we don’t want to lose him and I don’t think he wants to go anywhere else. Everything’s going fine," team boss Toto Wolff told reporters at last weekend`s Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona.
"There’s no reason why we shouldn’t be racing with each other for a few more years. We had other priorities in the last few weeks. We weren’t happy with our car’s performance and we needed to sort it out.
"And finalising a contract is something you need to involve yourself in and spend time and we both decided that we’d park it for a minute where we were. But it’s almost all sorted and we’ll pick it up at the right time," added the Austrian.
Hamilton started the season with pole position in Melbourne but Ferrari won the first two races.
Australian Daniel Ricciardo then put Red Bull on top of the podium in China, dealing Mercedes their third straight defeat for the first time in the V6 turbo hybrid era that started in 2014.
Mercedes have won both titles for the past four seasons.