Renault must target taking back fourth in the championship from McLaren, according to boss Cyril Abiteboul, without compromising its long-term Formula 1 programme.
Renault returned to Formula 1 as a works team in 2016 and improved from ninth, to sixth, and then fourth in the Constructors’ Championship.
But last year it slipped to fifth in the standings, behind McLaren, and only finished two points clear of Toro Rosso.
“2019 was a challenging year, but not without its merits,” said Abiteboul.
“It provided a reminder of what it takes to succeed in this sport and the high level of competition.
“More specifically, last season enabled us to take stock of our strengths and weaknesses at the end of our initial construction period and to take appropriate action.
“For the coming season, which starts next week in Barcelona, we must respect the three priorities identified during the off-season: reliability from the get-go; ensure a high level of development very early in the season and have a good conversion rate on track.
“However, we also need to regain confidence and reinforce team spirit to get the best from everyone, and to maximise our chances each race weekend during this unprecedented long and challenging season.
“Taking back fourth position in the Constructors’ Championship remains the objective over a season that will be more hotly-contested than ever.”
Abiteboul nonetheless stressed that Renault must not ignore the impending regulation changes for 2021, which he described as a “blank page” for the championship.
“This year must see us setting the best possible course for the major regulation changes of 2021,” he said.
“The organisational changes made in the second half of 2019 are with this firmly in mind.
“A great opportunity is on the horizon with the technical and sporting regulation changes and we must anticipate the chance and make sure that we are fully ready to seize it.
“This type of challenge is motivating as it represents the first opportunity since our return in 2016 to build a fully-integrated car from a blank page.
“When we returned to a changed and increasingly competitive sport in 2016, we expressed our ambitions to be world champions, and we set the bar high for every staff member.
“We need to adhere to this initial plan, without succumbing to the short-term objectives that take us away from our end goal.”