@ragav: It is the 2014 car.
@ncs: We didn't do a pre-season test at Barcelona last year, testing was in Bahrain. However, the pole lap for the grand prix was a 1:25.232 and Maldonado set a 1:24.871 at the post-race test (Barcelona was one of the few tracks where the Lotus E22 was quick).
It goes to show that these times are far from flat-out at this stage of the test. Quicker times will come as the week progresses.
However, there was a test here in 2013 ahead of the season and Nico Rosberg set the pace with a 1:20.130 in the Mercedes W04. As an interesting comparison, that year's Caterham set a 1:23.115, which is quicker than anybody managed in a 2014 car at this track last year.
As I type, Kimi lowers the top time to 1:27.523.
@Oggi84: A fair question. They are updated manually from the track by our very own Nate Saunders. However, to update after every lap means we'd have to chain him to the desk and he doesn't like that very much. We'll bring you news of any quick laps in the commentary and update the times in full as often as we can.
@Andreasjsn: You'll probably see a few this week. I'd be surprised if McLaren gets that far this week, but the likes of Williams, Ferrari and Mercedes may choose to switch their focus to race sims.
Button goes purple the second and third sector and slots i just behind Kimi with a 1:29.428.
@grahamg: Ferrari said the concept car was based on some minor changes to the regulations and was designed with pointers from its engineers, but in reality it was just arty farty stuff to create a debate. The car didn't have an airbox, for example, which might frustrate some of the engine engineers.... Ferrari is adamant F1 needs to be more appealing to fans, but it's worth keeping in mind that a change in regs would also give it a chance to catch up with Mercedes.
@Tungath: You can, but they are using the old car so it wouldn't be much use.
@Tungath: None of these times are particularly representative at this stage.
@Patz: It's not a dull noise, it's just a bit more throaty and bassy than its rivals. It's already sounding better than its first few runs in Jerez - although that was down to an issue that took the team a couple of days to trace.
Verstappen getting his first significant laps of the day completed but still no time.
@ragav: Hot weather is usually better for lap times. It's certainly a bit too chilly this week for the tyres to work properly. However, Pirelli does have a solution in a special winter compound. It's essentially the hard tyre but manufactured to work in lower temperatures like the ones we experience in winter testing. It's easy to spot when a driver is on these tyres as they have no sidewall markings.
@SteveTaro: The Mercedes probably has the most complicated monkey seat out there - it is indeed a little box. I suspect they are trying to just squeeze every ounce of downforce out of that area of the regulations. The benefit a team like Mercedes has is that they can use their greater resources to develop several different solutions (some very experimental) whereas smaller teams have to stick to one and hope it's the right route.
@Josh_Radnor: The details of Force India's engine contract aren't public, but I think it's safe to assume they have some advantage for running Wehrlein, who is a Mercedes development and DTM driver.
Red flags are out, and it's Maldonado stopped out on track again.
@replayDon: No complaints from the teams so far. It's always hard to tell when the weather is as cold as it is now because Pirelli understandably develop their race tyres for warmer climates. The constructions are largely unchanged (only the rear supersofts are completely new for 2015) but the cars are faster this year and therefore put more stress through the tyre. As a result we should see more degradation this year, but Pirelli is still committed to two or three stop races - nothing crazy.
The Lotus has stopped at Turn 5 and Maldonado is currently cutting a rather grumpy figure, stood on the kerb watching on.
@Forza: The exhaust has a big effect on the note and that is often down to how each team packages its car. Watching trackside at Jerez, I felt the Mercedes sounded different to the Williams, but its very subtle. Last year the Caterham had one of the sweetest sounding exhaust notes, sadly it didn't do much for them.
@CraigSimpson: Teams fly out updates during the test and the trip downunder is rather long for all of them. Bits that will be on the car at the end of this week are still in the factory right now, plus any major breakages would result in a long trip for spares.
@KonstantinosKazantzoglou: True. The fastest time here last year was actually Pastor Maldonado's 1:24.871 on the second day of the post-race test. However, the quickest time from this test in 2013 was a 1:20.130 by Nico Rosberg in the Mercedes. Still some way to go yet...
@ArjanElk: If a driver opts to return to the pits before completing a lap then it does not register a time.
The Lotus has finally been returned to the garage and we have green flags again.