Lotus has become the first Formula 1 team to reveal its new car ahead of the 2013 season.
After helping Kimi Raikkonen to third place in last year's world title, including a breakthrough race win in Abu Dhabi, the Enstone-based outfit hopes the E21 entry will be its ticket to challenge triple world champions Red Bull.
The E21 appears visually similar to last year's car, with one of the major technical adaptions being the passive double DRS that the team trialled last year. The car will continue to feature the stepped nose, despite the ‘vanity panel' that has become available to teams under revised regulations.
Team principal Eric Boullier says that big things are expected of the new car and hopes it and drivers Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean will be in a winning position.
“I think it is fair to say that great things are possible. The leap we made from 2011 to 2012 showed what we are capable of, Boullier said.
“Add to this the continuity and potential of our driver line-up and we have a very powerful cocktail for the season ahead.
“Our ambitious plan to turn ourselves into one of the top teams in Formula 1 is coming to fruition and now we need to harness this with strong and regular podium results.
“We are lean and hungry. Enstone knows how to win championships, but it is a while since we have won so we are very eager to taste glory again.”
While the car retains a similar look to last year's car, technical director James Allison says wholesale changes have been made.
“Depending on where you look, some parts of the new car are a ground-up redesign and in other areas we have further optimised the best bits of the design philosophy we've adopted for several seasons,” he said.
“The front and rear suspension layouts are substantially revised to try and give us better aerodynamic opportunities. The front wing is a continuation of the concepts we have worked on since the 2009 rules were published.
“For the rear wing system, we've continued to try to work on having a satisfactory level of rear downforce stability whilst having maximum DRS switching potential.”
Check out the video from the launch