Lewis Hamilton praises Mercedes after Malaysia GP win

Lewis Hamilton praised his Mercedes team for producing a "spectacular" car after his dominant victory in Sunday's Malaysian Grand Prix.

The Englishman, who beat team-mate Nico Rosberg and Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel, said the Mercedes was "the best car I've ever driven".

"The car was just spectacular this weekend," Hamilton said after winning from pole and taking the fastest lap.

"So I'm really, really happy with just a great performance by the team."

Hamilton controlled the race after taking the lead from pole position, and was able to extend his advantage while also conserving fuel.

Drivers can use no more than 100kg of fuel in a race this season and Hamilton used less in Malaysia than any other driver in the top 10.

Malaysia

"I don't think any race is ever easy," he said. "Obviously there are opportunities that are presented in front of you and obviously you have to take them with both hands and today that's what I did.

"But looking after the car, looking after fuel, not making any mistakes, it was a massive challenge in that sense."

Hamilton's victory puts him second in the world championship, 18 points behind Rosberg, who won the first race in Australia two weeks ago while Hamilton retired with an engine problem.

But he said it was far too early to start thinking about the championship.

"There's such a long way to go," he said. "We've got a lot of competition out there so I'm sure everyone's going to be pushing and we need to stay on it."

Rosberg said being championship leader "sounds very good already" but added there was "a long way to go".

He added: "I'm not thinking about that at the moment, I'm really just taking it race by race, just enjoying the moment, making the most of it, keeping on it.

"The best example is now Red Bull. The last day of testing was four weeks ago or something, they were absolutely nowhere and now [Vettel] was right in the back of me, pushing me.

Highlights: Hamilton powers to race win

"OK, I had some pace in hand so I could beat him in the end clearly but still, the way they've ramped up their pace is very impressive, so we need to keep on it to keep our advantage."

Rosberg admitted he could do nothing about Hamilton in Malaysia.

"I would have preferred to win but Lewis was just better today," he said. "I need to analyse what I can do better and try again in Bahrain."

The teams reconvene in the Gulf state for the third race of the season next weekend.