While in New Delhi, Force India boss Vijay Mallya has let it be known that the second chassis to be built by the team will be unveiled at Jerez in early-March. Part of the reason why the 2009 Force India is delayed is due to the team having to fit new components that were not a part of the first chassis, the VJM01. With a new affiliation with McLaren and Mercedes, Force India will have to now include the Mercedes engine and McLaren gearbox, as well the KERS system.
The new car, VJM02, is under construction. It will have a McLaren gearbox and Mercedes engine, which is a big change from VJM01. We are going to unveil it at Jerez in early March. Vijay Mallya.
Mallya is confident his team can progress into the midfield this year, having failed to score any points in the 2008 campaign. At times, the Silverstone-based squad looked good for one or two points, but it would seem circumstances conspired against them, most notably the incident involving Kimi Raikkonen at Monaco. However, with a more complete package from McLaren and Mercedes, the car should run better than previously, although the midfield is a whole different ball game. In 2008, the laptimes between the middle group of cars were very close and tightly packed. While some might say that makes it easier to progress, others say it makes it easier to fall behind.
We will have a six day test which I think is enough. Besides, the facilities at our Silverstone factory are quite up to the mark and I think we will be ready for the first race. Vijay Mallya.
Either way, Mallya is not overly concerned that his team will be among the last to launch, having explained that Force India will test for six days prior to shipping the cars out to Australia.