( dpa ) - Toyota launched its new Formula One car Thursday as the Japanese auto giant looks to step up its challenge for the championship after two lacklustre previous seasons.
Drivers Jarno Trulli, newcomer Timo Glock and number three Kamui Kobayashi joined the presentation of the TF108 at the team's Cologne headquarters.
The Toyota F1 team has been in operation since 2000 and competing since 2002 but results have not matched the company's huge budget outlay of an estimated 400 million dollars a year.
Last season the team was well off the pace of leading manufacturers Ferrari and McLaren - who this week also unwrapped their new cars - and is still without a win in 104 Grand Prix races.
The last two seasons have been hugely disappointing after promising results in 2005 when Toyota achieved three podiums and a pole position.
Team principal Tadashi Yamashina said the team needs to take make "a great improvement" on 2007 when it garnered just 13 points.
"We are in Formula 1 to win, so we want to do this soon," he said ahead of the launch.
"The drivers should be aiming to finish in the points regularly and challenging for podiums.
"In the team we must make our best efforts to give the drivers a car which is capable of achieving our goals."
Toyota has retained Italian Trulli and hired 25-year-old German Glock, the reigning GP2 champion, who replaces the departed Ralf Schumacher. Japan's Kobayashi is test driver.
Trulli finished 13th in the F1 standings in 2007 while Schumacher was 16th, while the team languished in sixth place in the constructors' championship.
"This is a new start for me. Together with Jarno I want to get the team back in the top 10," Glock said.
The team hopes the TF108, which has a longer wheelbase, a major aerodynamic upgrade, revised suspension and a new gearbox, will revive fortunes.
Yamashina has said Toyota may pull out of F1 altogether unless the team can start producing results over the next two years.