Former grand prix driver Gerhard Berger believes only Honda will be able to match Mercedes' form in terms of power unit performance in Formula One.
Although the Austrian admits McLaren's current problems are mainly caused by the Japanese engine manufacturer's engine.
"They are the only ones who can come to the same level as Mercedes," Berger told Austrian media, "because McLaren itself is always well prepared."
Honda is returning to Formula One this year as McLaren's power unit supplier, but the Woking-based squad has endured a very difficult pre-season and arrives in Australia as one of the teams with the smallest amount of laps covered.
"The problem is quite clear on the engine side," said Berger of McLaren's tough winter.
"I have the feeling that they have miscalculated something."
The former McLaren driver also reckons Mercedes is clearly ahead of its rivals before the first race of the season.
"They are quite clearly the favourite," Berger said, estimating the gap to the next-best team to be at least one second per lap.
"And that is an awful lot in Formula One today," he added.