The developments, which Sauber’s head of track engineering Giampaolo Dall’Ara described as significant, are the squad’s first major update since the 2015 season-opener in Australia. The new configuration centres on a new short nose, but also includes slimmer bodywork and a slightly revised monocoque, new wings, engine cover and diffuser, and new brake ducts.
“The car is being updated all around,” said Nasr. “It will be important to validate these numbers on track as this will guide us for the 2016 car.
“We know the areas we have to improve. It’s all-around improvement, mainly on downforce I would say, but it’s not like a specific point, it’s a general overview of the package.
“This weekend - and how we take it onwards to the end of the season - will be important to understand how the car is reacting.”
After a three-race scoreless slump between Canada and Great Britain, Sauber have picked up points in each of the last three races with Marcus Ericsson. Nasr, however, hasn’t scored a point since finishing ninth at Monaco in May, though he puts his recent failure to add to his tally down to bad luck.
“If you look back at Monza, I started just outside the top ten, was running into the top ten into the early laps and then I got a puncture,” he said. “It’s one of the missed opportunities but this is racing.
“Sometimes it goes like this. I wasn’t able to get the points out there but this weekend we’ve got something to look forward.”
Sauber lie eighth in the current constructors' standings on 25 points, 10 behind Toro Rosso and eight ahead of McLaren.