No, it's the car itself that is slow "There is a lot of chance and possibility, but at the moment we are a little bit off the pace compared with the other teams on the development side."
That could all still be about the PU in large part. Yes, some of it will be the car (by their own admission they've gone conservative on cooling etc for the start of the season). But it's the PU that's been holding the Renault teams back from getting to know their new cars, and therefore slowing down the pace of development. I'd be very surprised if a high 1:39 is the fastest that car can go around Bahrain in its current spec. Give them a reliable PU performing on a par with the Merc or Ferrari and I think they'd find not tenths, but whole seconds (as will the other Renault teams). That takes them out of GP2 pace and into solid F1 pace, which is the guts of what Kamui was talking about.
The question is, how many seconds relative to the other Renault teams will they gain as the PU improves? You'd have to assume that a reliable Red Bull should be in the same pace bracket as the Mercedes, McLaren, and Ferrari. Right now they're all the way back there with a fastest time less than a tenth different from the Caterham.
I'll be shocked if the Caterham makes that jump as well, but by the same token I'd be shocked if they're still running GP2 lap times when they get that PU sorted.
Edited by GhostR, 25 February 2014 - 14:48.