Red Bull Racing has launched the RB6, an evolution of its 2009 race car which brought the team to a second place finish in last year's Formula One campaign.
The team said RB6's revelation late in the pre-season tests sessions was an intentional move to further develop the car.
"We wanted to give ourselves as much time as possible to research and develop the car," said Adrian Newey, Red Bull Racing chief technical officer. "We felt that because the car is evolutionary, we hopefully didn't need to be out early to establish the basic concept of the car. We wanted to allow ourselves as much time as possible to research it."
Team principal Christian Horner seconded Newey, saying "there's no point in burning up engine mileage and rubber on an RB5. We'd rather use the tires for quality testing at the three tests that we have confirmed we'll run at, starting with the first test in Jerez."
Ironically, the RB6's first quality testing day was shortened by an oil leak on the Renault-sourced RS27-2010 engine, enabling the team's senior driver, Mark Webber to complete just 50 laps.
Partnering Webber for this season is Sebastian Vettel who narrowly missed the driver's title last season by 11 points.