Prost: 2017 a pivotal year for Renault

© XPB 

Alain Prost believes the up-coming season holds promise for Renault but will also provide the French team with an important field-test.

The manufacturer has set a high bar for 2017, aiming to finish fifth in the Constructors' standings, and to do so it has taken a bold step by revamping its V6 power unit and tightening up collaboration and coordination between all of its departments.

"I think it's a very important season because it's the first year that all the team were able to build the car -  Enstone on one side and Viry on the other - and think about the integration of the engine," Prost told ESPN at the launch of Renault's new RS17 in London yesterday.

"The engine is a completely new engine, it's very promising but we need to see what it does on the track.

"So it's very important we go back to a normal performance, even if we know it's much, much, much too soon to beat the top teams.

"But the position of fifth in the championship is still ambitious but it's realistic and I hope we can reach this objective."

Prost also underlined the importance of F1's latest generation of cars and the impact that will likely have on the sport's fan base.

"I think it's important we can have some impressive cars as we need to show people that F1 is something special, which it is, and maybe to bring new, maybe younger people who don't follow F1 too much."

GALLERY: F1 drivers' wives and girlfriends

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter