Giancarlo Fisichella says he was pleasantly 'surprised' by his first impressions of Force India's new VJM02 after its debut run at Jerez in Spain on Sunday.
Although the first outing was marred by a few mechanical dramas, Fisichella believes the car is a step forward over its predecessor and thinks there is plenty of reason to feel upbeat about its potential.
"It is a bit frustrating as we could only do 31 laps today, especially as it is very important to try and get as many as possible as we are already late compared to the other teams," said Fisichella.
"I am however quite surprised and happy about what I felt with the behaviour of the car today. It's very promising and I felt much more consistency, even under braking, and more stability in the high speed corners.
"We need to improve the traction a bit and also the oversteering after a few laps, but this is a problem others have had as well. The lap time is good and I am quite pleased as we did it with one set of new tyres and I know I can do much better than this.
"We are not that far away from the other people so I am looking forward to tomorrow and another day with more laps where we can try to improve the car a little bit and concentrate on reliability."
Fisichella will continue testing the car tomorrow, before handing it over to teammate Adrian Sutil for Tuesday.