"From my perspective," Gerhard Berger told the Austrian agency, "it is a big step forward.
Mar.12 (GMM) Gerhard Berger is no longer critical of F1's technological revolution.
Having counted himself among the 'purists' who dislike the complicated energy recovery systems and fuel-saving limitations, the former Ferrari and Benetton driver told APA news agency he has now changed his mind.
"From my perspective," he told the Austrian agency, "it is a big step forward.
"Until my visit to (the) Bahrain (test), I was critical," said 54-year-old Berger, currently recovering from badly breaking his arm in a skiing crash.
"At first I found it too technical, too complicated for the fans," he explained. "But I need to revise that. This is pure Formula One.
"The cars are 20kph faster on the straights and they also have real power out of the corners."
10-time Grand Prix Berger, perhaps best known as F1 legend Ayrton Senna's McLaren teammate, also said he has no problem with the milder tones of the new V6 engines.
"The criticism (of the sound) is coming mainly from people who have not heard them," he said.