Mercedes-Benz Formula One team is trying hard to get Williams to let go off Valtteri Bottas to replace Nico Rosberg. However, Williams has rejected an initial offer to Bottas from his 2017 contract.
Mercedes F1 boss Toto Wolff has approached Williams - who uses Mercedes engine - that he will give a major reduction in their engine payout in return for Bottas.
Also, Mercedes reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein will be an option to Williams' exchange for Bottas. Nico Rosberg surprising announcement about his retirement five days after he won the world championship has left Mercedes looking for an earnest replacement.
Part of Valtteri Bottas' management team is Toto Wolff and the Mercedes boss sees Bottas as a close like-for-like replacement for Rosberg. Felipe Massa who was driving for Williams in the 2016 season, has announced his retirement as well.
Williams has signed Canadian rookie Lance Stroll and they cannot afford to lose an experienced driver like Bottas. Getting Wehrlein as the replacement is a concern for the team as he has only one year's experience with the lower ranked Manor team. This could be risky as Williams will be looking to strengthenits 2017 season campaign.
Other possibilities for Mercedes includes Carlos Sainz, the 22-year old Spaniard who is under contract with Red Bull's junior team Toro Rosso for the third season. Sources say that if Mercedes approached Toro Rosso, the Red Bull team would release him.
With Nico Rosberg's sudden announcement of retiring from Formula One racing, Mercedes is looking for a suitable replacement to drive alongside Lewis Hamilton.
Valtteri Bottas is good replacement considering his reliability, consistent points scorer and relatively easy to manage alongside Lewis Hamilton.