Pastor Maldonado believes Lotus has delivered a "revolutionary" car in the form of the E22.

Lotus skipped the first test at Jerez to focus on development of the new car, but has struggled so far in Bahrain. Maldonado was only able to complete 26 laps on the third day of the second test due to what he described as numerous "small" issues, but he believes the car itself is radical compared to the rest of the field.

"I saw the car in the wind tunnel and it was fantastic," Maldonado said. "It's a completely different car, a revolutionary car in the paddock. It's the most beautiful car, aggressive... I think they have done a really good job in terms of design, using the rules and looking at the particulars of the car. The design looks quite great, aggressive and looking for all the limits. We hope to have a good car during the season."

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Despite his praise for the car, Maldonado admitted focusing on reliability rather than performance will be key for Lotus in the early rounds.

"For sure the first races you need to think about finishing. That will be the best way. In my opinion all the teams seem to be not at 100% because of reliability so it will be very important to finish the race, for sure."

However, Maldonado was reluctant to say that skipping the Jerez test was a mistake for Lotus.

"Who knows? It's difficult to say. For sure we started with some days less than the other teams but we were in Jerez one day, did a filming day, we had no problems, all clean. We completed the mileage and here we started to have some problems. It's very difficult to say. With the new systems in Formula One you never know; we are adapting ourselves to these new rules and new things.

"There are lots of things in the car as you know, so we had some problems but maybe less than the others in the first days. Hopefully we will get there quite soon and we can be competitive and solid from the beginning of the season."