Tense meet for Nicole & Lewis

As Nicole Scherzinger leaned in to embrace her ex-boyfriend Lewis Hamilton with a warm hug, the F1 driver kept his distance, not reciprocating the gesture.

Holding back: Nicole Scherzinger embraced ex Lewis Hamilton in an LA car park, but he didn't reciprocate the hug

It appeared that while Nicole was making an effort to break the palpable ice, Lewis was having none of it, and maintained a stand-offish demeanor.

The 26-year-old stared at the ground during most of their meeting.

Nicole’s eyes tried to meet his gaze, but Lewis continued to look away, brushing off her anguished looks.

The couple — whose four year relationship ended last month — shared an awkward silence as they seemed caught at odds.

Awkward distance: Nicole looked anguished as Lewis avoided her eyes, staring instead at the ground

And when Lewis kept his hand in his pocket as Nicole attempted a reconciliatory hug the excruciating atmosphere became unbearable.

A dejected Lewis walked away past a shopping mall, Nicole’s hurt eyes burning a hole in his back.

His mood was a total contrast to that of two weeks ago, when he triumphed at the season’s penultimate F1 race in Abu Dhabi.

Lewis split with U.S. X Factor judge and former Pussycat Doll Nicole, in October after four years.

Reports said he wasn’t ready to settle down and have children.

‘I’m not ready for a family,’ Hamilton is said to have told friends.

A source told the Daily Mirror: ‘Lewis decided they had to part. She wanted more than he could offer at this stage in his life.’

Back in 2009 Nicole told the paper: ‘I am the happiest I have ever been. Lewis is such an amazing, humble and chivalrous guy. We would love to have beautiful angel babies together one day.’

Lewis spoke to the paper about the split but confirmed the pair are still friends.

He said: ‘Yeah, we’re friends at least and we can move forward. It’s never easy going through tough times.

‘It’s these kind of times that are sent to try you, and it’s about how you pull through them.