Lotus's revamped E20 took to the track in Korea on Friday morning, featuring a series of updates including a Coanda-effect exhaust.
The team is keeping its fingers crossed that the updates, which it hopes will deliver a lap time improvement of around three tenths of a second, will help it get back on the podium for the first time since the Belgian Grand Prix.
Lotus's switch to the down-washed exhausts comes after wind tunnel tests showed the design performed better than the concept the outfit had run since the start of the season.
The timing of the updates is important because the team needs to start repeating the form it enjoyed earlier this season if it is to stay in contention for the championship. Kimi Raikkonen is 37 points adrift of leader Fernando Alonso in the title standings with five races to go.
Speaking about his hopes for the updates, Raikkonen said in Korea on Thursday that the team would only be sure of their potential after Friday practice.
"We know the numbers from the wind tunnel and the other calculations but until we run anything we can't really know what it is going to bring us," he said. "Hopefully it will work as we expect and it will improve our position in the order, but we should know after practice."