After missing the opening day of running, Lotus got its new E23 out on track on Monday with Pastor Maldonado at the wheel, a day earlier than originally expected.
Insiders were impressed with the front of the black and gold car, featuring a Mercedes-like ultra-short nose that is tipped to be widely copied by rivals in 2015.
Another new car with an impressively short nose this year is the Williams.
“It is definitely the shortest nose Williams has ever built,” said technical boss Pat Symonds.
Auto Motor und Sport said the Grove team made no fewer than four attempts to pass internal crash tests with the short nose, ultimately settling for the current version with the conspicuous bulge at the tip.