2011 Team Lotus T128 - Click above for high-res image gallery
Team Lotus has had a busy off-season, principally dealing with the naming rights dispute with Group Lotus and its new Renault team. That issue is still far from resolved, with both teams laying claim to the name, but the Malaysian outfit is taking first blood by launching its new car online before their British counterparts unveil theirs at Valencia. In doing so, Team Lotus becomes the second team to launch its 2011 challenger (following the new Ferrari F150), and the team calls it a complete clean-sheet redesign over last year's car.
Designed by Mike Gascoyne, the new Lotus T128 is a considerably more radical than the T127 it replaces, which was rushed onto the grid with a more conservative design in order to get the team a foothold in its inaugural season. Swapping the previous car's Cosworth power for Renault, the T128 also uses a Red Bull gearbox and starts the season without the KERS regenerative braking system permitted for use once again under this year's regulations.
The T128 sticks with the green and yellow livery after initial plans to switch to the JPS black and gold were aborted before Lotus Renault GP released its own plans for the same. It will be piloted once again by Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen, with its reserve/test drive still yet to be announced. The new car isn't expected to make its on-track debut until the second day of testing at Valencia, but you can read more about it in the press release after the jump and take your first look in the high-resolution image gallery below.