Formual 1 drivers who have been busy testing at Yas Marina Circuit this week have given Pirelli's new hypersoft tyre compound broadly positive reviews.
Pirelli is planning to offer teams a selection of dry weather tyres from a range of up to eight compounds in 2018. The most durable will be the superhard, with the hypersoft at the other end of the scale.
Lewis Hamilton gave the latter the thumbs up after trying them out on Tuesday during the first day of official post-season testing in Abu Dhabi.
"On early impression, the new hypersoft is the best tyre that Pirelli have produced since returning to Formula 1," he said.
Pirelli believes that the new tyre has been "about a second per lap faster" than the existing ultrasoft selection.
“The new pink hypersoft meets our initial expectations," said Pirelli's Mario Isola. "But this obviously needs to be confirmed on other types of track as well."
Other drivers have also been giving the latest compound a warm welcome.
"The new tyre is really a surprise," Sebastian Vettel suggested. "It's a real step forward. But of course it's up to Pirelli to decide on what tracks we get to use it."
"It's really fast on one lap and then it degrades more noticeably than the others," the Ferrari driver added. "But it's within limits. All in all it was a really interesting test."
"It was a really interesting day, trying out the new Pirellis," said Valtteri Bottas, who picked up testing duties for Mercedes on Wednesday. "I could really feel the differences."
"This was the first opportunity to try the 2018 Pirelli compounds," noted Force India's chief race engineer Tom McCullough.
"It’s very important that we maximise our understanding of them to help steer our direction during the winter."
Force India tapped test and development driver Nikita Mazepin to complete an extensive tyre programme on Tuesday.
"Testing the new Pirelli tyres for 2018 was interesting." he said. "It gave us the first idea of how the various compounds will work next year.
"I would have liked to improve my times a bit towards the end of the day, but I was blocked on my last new tyre run," he added. "However, it’s a test and we can be happy with what we achieved."
Esteban Ocon was in the seat on Wednesday, but couldn't add to the debate about the softest new compound.
"We learnt loads about the tyres," he said. "[But] I didn’t get to test the new hypersofts. I was able to do short and long runs on the other compounds I tried."