Permane: Our car is faster in the corners than a Williams or McLaren

Alan Permane with Romain Grosjean

Alan Permane with Romain Grosjean

Lotus claim have claimed that  their troubled 2014 car, designated the E22, is often better than a Williams or a McLaren, particularly in corners.

The Enstone based team is badly suffering with its car, which has been plagued with issues related to the problematic Renault V6 turbo Power Unit.

“We are still in the learning process,” chief engineer Alan Permane told Auto Motor und Sport. “I suppose we need to make exactly the step that Red Bull made between the Bahrain test and Melbourne.”

There was, however, a glimmer of hope for crisis-struck Lotus in Malaysia, when Romain Grosjean at least managed to finish the race, albeit outside the points.

“For us it’s a big step,” Permane insisted, “even though we’re not usually happy with eleventh. “But the times in the second sector showed that our car is fast in the corners. Faster than a Williams or McLaren,” he claims.

Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Qualifying, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Saturday 15 March 2014

Pastor Maldonado struggled with lack of grip in Melbourne

“In the other two sectors we are behind, especially in braking,” Permane admitted.

“We have a decent car, but we’re lagging behind with the Power Unit, even compared with other Renault teams. But that’s our fault,” he admitted.

Permane also admitted that skipping the first official test at Jerez has had consequences.

“We are just behind in time,” he explained. “We missed the opportunity to recognise the problems early on and sort them out.

“We will make a development step with the drivetrain in Bahrain, a major one in China and then another one in Spain,” he revealed. (GMM)

Subbed by AJN.