Formula One debutants Haas are on schedule to roll out their new car at the first test in Barcelona next February and are hoping to challenge for points in the opening race, according to team principal Gunther Steiner.
Haas, the first US owned team in the sport since 1986, will be using a car built in Italy by chassis maker Dallara with Ferrari engines and technical support.
Experienced Frenchman Romain Grosjean and Mexican Esteban Gutierrez have been signed as drivers.
“It’s only 10 weeks [until the test], which is not a lot, but the work is going to plan. We are pretty happy, everything seems to come together,” Steiner told Sky Sports television at the team’s Banbury base in central England.
He ruled out a launch before the team arrives in Spain for testing.
“The car is the last thing you bring in and the production planning is going well,” he added. “We will start to produce a car in mid-January, we will do the crash test at the beginning of January and then we will start to put one together.
“We will roll it out hopefully the day before the testing starts.”
Formula One has two pre-season tests in Barcelona with the first starting on February 22. The opening race in Melbourne is on March 20.
Steiner said the team had yet to decide on a colour scheme.
“Mr Haas has not decided yet, I think it’s a very personal decision and we give him time until the last minute ... I actually don’t know,” the Austrian added.
He said Ferrari would not deliver the team’s engines until mid-February.
“Everything has been designed and signed off. The Barcelona car is signed off, everything is in production now,” said Steiner.
The aim for Melbourne was to be competitive and reach the second phase of qualifying: “To have a chance of points, that is our goal. To show good, to show what we worked the last two years for, that we have no big dramas going on.”
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