Lotus: Reliability was a positive

Team also happy with responsiveness to set-up changes

Last Updated: 14/02/12 3:26pm

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Lotus: Handed their E20 an encouraging debut at Jerez last week

Lotus: Handed their E20 an encouraging debut at Jerez last week

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Lotus trackside operations director Alan Permane feels the reliability of the E20 was one of the major positives for them during the first pre-season test.

The team, who have changed their name from Renault ahead of the new season, gave their latest car an encouraging debut at Jerez last week, with Kimi Raikkonen topping the timesheets on day one while Romain Grosjean was the fastest of the 2012 cars on the Thursday.

What was most pleasing for the engineers at Enstone, though, was the fact that the duo completed more than 400 laps over the two days and experienced only a few minor problems.

When asked about the positives that came out of the first test, Permane said: "I would say there are two things. I really can't separate one as being more important than the other. The first as we've mentioned before is the reliability of the car, which has been very impressive so far. Although we had a few niggling issues there was nothing that stopped us running for a significant length of time.

"The second is the way the car responds to set-up changes. The E20 is clearly a nice package. When we make changes to the car the drivers can feel it, whether it be positive or negative, which means that further down the line it will be a much easier car to set up and dial pace into."

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Smiling faces

Optimism in the Lotus camp is high after the good start, but Permane insists they will keep their feet on the ground.

"You can definitely feel the effects around the factory," he added.

"Everyone seems to have a smile on their face. Having said that, we're not going to try and run before we can walk. We're very conscious that there's a long way to go. The car is certainly reliable and well balanced, but it's too early to say any more than that at this stage. It's impossible to predict performance after just one test."

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