Team principal Bob Fernley says Force India's owners must decide within the next few months if they are happy for the squad to keep fighting in Formula 1's midfield pack, or if they want to dig deep into their pockets to help fund a push to the front of the grid.
"I think we have got to have a fundamental rethink," Fernley said. "The reconstruction plan was put in place by the beginning of 2009. We are now into the third year of that, and pretty well have delivered what we wanted to deliver on that.
"The question for the shareholders I think really is, do you want to stay the best of the rest, or do you want to make a move to become a podium contender? They have got to make that decision, because financially it has a huge impact. We will be preparing that process for them over the coming months, and they will give us the direction."
Fernley feels that even without a ramping up of investment this year, Force India can fulfill its ambitions of breaking into the top five this year.
"Hopefully we can gain a position this year, which would be wonderful," he said. "As long as we don't lose anything, and can still be in the mix for the next year or two, we will have achieved the goals for our current status, and then hopefully we can back it up with the next program."
Fernley is pleased with how winter testing has gone, but says the outfit is still unsure just where it stands in the rankings.
"A lot is going to depend on when we get the pecking order in Melbourne, and we know what we are really fighting against from a performance point of view," he explained. "Then we will know how hard it is to achieve it.
"At the moment, it looks like we are in the mix for where we want to be – with the same people chasing us, and we chasing them – as expected."
Fernley also suspects that the bigger teams may well move ahead of the chasing pack after the final test, thanks to larger upgrades planned for their cars for the first race of the season.
"I am sure everyone will start running the Australia package toward the end of next week, and we will be no different," he said. "But it is not massive. From our point of view it will be relatively small – I think you will see the big changes on the front-running teams."