Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has conceded he "cannot be confident" of a title charge this year despite a priority being put on the 2022 car last season.
F1 enters a radically new era with altered aerodynamic compositions and new tyres all aimed to create a package that allows for closer, more exciting racing within the budget cap era.
Ferrari was one of the numerous teams to switch the majority of its focus to the new car early on rather than developing last year's contender as per usual, with the hope of hitting the ground running at the beginning of the new developmental cycle.
With Mercedes and Red Bull entangled in a tight championship battle at the end of last year, Binotto was asked, in a media briefing including GPFans, whether he was confident the Scuderia could join the fight.
"First, I cannot be confident," replied Binotto.
"The reason why it seems [like] that [is] if I look at the gap [to Mercedes and Red Bull], it's still significant, showing that those teams are very strong.
"The fact we have put a lot of effort on the 2022 [car], putting the priority [on it] was for us a necessity because we knew that if we would not have done that, it would have been difficult for us to have a good car or a competitive car in 2022. So for us, it was more a necessity.
"Is that giving us the full confidence? No, we cannot be confident because, as I said before, we have no references from the others.
"What we know, certainly, is that we put all our effort and whatever we will have is the best result of a team effort and that was most important for us."