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Wraps come off new Force India at Silverstone 01 Feb 2013

Robert Fearnley (GBR) Force India F1 Team and Paul di Resta (GBR) Force India F1 with the new Force India VJM06. Force India VJM06 Launch, Silverstone, England, 1 February 2013. Paul di Resta (GBR) Force India VJM06. Force India VJM06 First Run, Silverstone, England, 1 February 2013. Robert Fearnley (GBR) Force India F1 Team and Paul di Resta (GBR) Force India F1 with the new Force India VJM06. Force India VJM06 Launch, Silverstone, England, 1 February 2013. Paul di Resta (GBR) Force India F1 with the new Force India VJM06. Force India VJM06 Launch, Silverstone, England, 1 February 2013. Paul di Resta (GBR) Force India VJM06. Force India VJM06 First Run, Silverstone, England, 1 February 2013.

Force India unveiled their 2013 contender, the VJM06, at Silverstone on Friday morning, with Paul di Resta - the team’s only confirmed driver for the new season - helping to pull the covers off the new car, before giving it a brief track debut around the British Grand Prix circuit.

“Seeing the car built and complete for the first time is a special feeling,” said Di Resta. “I’ve followed its progress in the tunnel and it looks very impressive - aggressive and fast. Now I’m just eager to get out there and see where we stand compared to our competitors. After the winter I feel refreshed and keen to get back to business.”

The VJM06 is the third car to be overseen by Force India technical director, Andrew Green, and builds on the strengths of the team's 2012 car, which took them to seventh in the constructors’ table. With stable technical rules the car is more evolution than revolution, with the addition of a ‘modesty panel’ to cover the stepped nose being the most obvious visual change.

“The VJM06 doesn’t look massively different to its predecessor, but beneath the skin we’ve looked at every detail to try and find more performance,” said team principal, Dr Vijay Mallya. “I’ve followed the development of the car closely and I’m proud of what we have achieved. The objective now is to make sure we build on the promise of last year and have a strong start to the season.”

Regarding his team's driver line-up for 2013, Mallya added: "We are very close to making our decision and I can assure you that we will arrive in Australia with one of the most exciting pairings on the grid."

Summing up the approach to the design of the VJM06, Green said: “It’s a brand new car from the ground-up - everything is new. We discussed carrying over big chunks of last year’s car, including the chassis, but decided not to. There were still some gains to be had with the chassis, so we elected to take the performance benefits. The biggest change that everybody is going to notice this year is the fairing on top of the nose to hide the 'step'. It’s neutral as far as the car’s performance is concerned but tidies up the flow over the top of the chassis.”

Chief operating officer, Otmar Szafnauer, praised the team’s efforts over the winter to develop the VJM06: “We’re very optimistic. We’ve been working hard over the winter, trying to make improvements where we know we can find performance. Everything has come together very nicely. We’ve also focussed on operational strength by bolstering our simulator programme and increasing our CFD capacity with new hardware.”

2013 sees Force India’s cars powered by Mercedes engines with the gearbox supplied by McLaren Applied Technologies for a fifth season. And this will be their third season with the Mercedes KERS.

The VJM06 will make its official testing debut at Jerez in Spain next week, when the first of three pre-season tests begins on Tuesday.

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