The new 2015 Force India VJM08 – the eighth chassis since Vijay Mallya took over the team – hits the track once again under Mercedes power. The team has retained the same lineup as last year, with Mexican driver Sergio Perez partnering once again with Germany's Nico Hülkenberg. The two will be tasked with improving the team's lot over past seasons.
After taking over from Spyker, Midland and Jordan before it, Force India finished the 2008 world championship in 10th place, advanced to ninth the following season, then seventh, and completed the last two seasons in sixth place – well ahead of Toro Rosso, Lotus and the back-markers but behind front-runners like McLaren, Ferrari, Williams, Red Bull and Mercedes. The team's best result to date was the second-place finish which Giancarlo Fisichella achieved at the 2009 Belgian Grand Prix, and scored a solitary podium finish last season in Bahrain.
So how are its chances looking for this season? It may be too early to tell, but the team was stuck near the bottom of the time sheets at the final test session in Barcelona over the weekend with the new VJM08 chassis pictured here. We'll be watching to see how it fares once the season kicks off in a couple of weeks in Melbourne.