Lewis Hamilton is on his way to becoming the greatest Formula 1 driver that has "ever existed", according to Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff.

The Briton is racking up pole positions and wins at an incredible rate and could be the one to beat most of the records that have been unbroken since Michael Schumacher retired in 2012. He is currently 66-points ahead of Sebastian Vettel, and a fifth place finish in Mexico this weekend will earn him his fourth world title, making him the most successful British driver in the history of the sport.

Hamilton is some way off the German's seven drivers' titles, and it remains to be seen if he can match that tally as he closes in on another drivers' title. But he has already surpassed Schumacher's pole position record of 68 and has now recorded 71 following his front row start at the United States Grand Prix last weekend.

The 32-year-old has 62 race wins to the former Ferrari and Mercedes driver's 91 wins and while it remains a difficult task he could get close to it if he continues in the sport for a few more years. He is also set to take over from former teammate Nico Rosberg as the driver who has entered the most consecutive races - he is currently one behind with 205.

"Lewis is about to break all records that have been set in Formula One and it is just a matter of time that people will say he is on track to being the best driver that has ever existed," Wolff said about his driver, as quoted by the Guardian.

"The high performers often polarise because they have strong opinions and they express those. You don't want to be down the middle and boring, and in today's day and age if you polarise you stand out. Lewis stands out.

"Those sport icons that polarise eventually get the credit but maybe after their career ends. This is the best Lewis – both on and off the track – that I have worked with since 2013," he added.

Rosberg exit beneficial to Mercedes

Wolff also seemed to agree Hamilton's assessment that there is more camaraderie within the Mercedes team following the exit of Rosberg at the end of last season.

The three-time world champion and his former German teammate endured a difficult relationship during their title battles in the last three seasons and it was at its lowest point during the 2016 campaign.

Lewis Hamilton
Toto Wolff believes Lewis Hamilton is at his best at the moment Getty

Hamilton and Rosberg's on and off track battles affected the entire team, which led to the team threatening their drivers with the sack following their collision in the opening lap of the Spanish Grand Prix. The former also fell out with the hierarchy after disobeying a direct order in the final race of the campaign.

However, Hamilton cleared the air with Wolff after Rosberg's retirement and has formed a strong partnership with Valtteri Bottas. The duo have a cordial relationship and the Mercedes motorsport boss believes it has spread through the entire team despite admitting that they still regret that they did not manage the Hamilton-Rosberg rivalry in a different way.

"In hindsight all things happen for a reason," Wolff said referring to Rosberg's retirement at the end of last season.

"So, looking back at the season and the structure we now have with Lewis and Valtteri Bottas – which has benefitted our overall team's performance and the drivers' performance – then yes.

"There is a certain regret we could not make it less controversial but it is down to the dynamics between the drivers and the personalities and maybe things we are not aware of," he explained.

"It was certainly a factor that they were both on the same level and competing for the world championship but it was more a factor that there was also too much baggage from the past."