Renault says R31 design ‘brave’

Renault technical director James Allison has described the team’s approach to the design of its new R31 as being at the “brave end of brave" as it looks to get back to winning ways this year.

The former world champion team goes into the coming season with a new look following the arrival of Lotus Cars as its title sponsor, with its 2011 cars to be pained in the black and gold livery made famous by the original Lotus Formula 1 team.

In its first year under the control of the Genii investment group last year, the Enstone-based squad rebounded strongly from its dismal 2009 campaign and re-established itself in the top five of the constructors’ championship.

Hopes are high for a further improvement this season and Allison suggests the team has gone aggressive in the design of its latest challenger in a bid to take that next step forward.

“This time of year is a heady mix of both thrilling excitement of finding out, confirming that all your plans are coming to fruition and also abject terror that you will not deliver the thing in time," he said in a video interview on Lotus Cars’ website.

“Anyone who follows the sport will have seen that words like aggressive, brave, are being bandied around across several of the teams this year for their solutions.

"I believe that we have chosen a direction that is really on the brave end of brave."

Speaking in the same video, team boss Eric Boullier made clear the squad’s ambition for 2011 and expressed confidence that, irrespective of how its rivals’ new cars turn out, it has certainly made big improvements.

“We want to win and we want to be successful in Formula 1," Boullier said.

“The more attention we can get from the fans and the Lotus people and from all our sponsors, we put ourselves into a pressure mode because we have to win.

“We know now we will be much more competitive than last year. We don’t know yet obviously what the other teams, and the other forces, will be in F1 – but we already know we will be much stronger."

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