Lotus F1 has revealed a strong driver pairing of Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen for its debut season in 2010.
Trulli joins the team from Toyota, having lost his seat when the team pulled out of Formula One, while Kovalainen joins from McLaren, where he has been replaced by Jenson Button.
Lotus team principal Tony Fernandes said the two drivers would bring experience as well as exuberance to the team next year as it aims to become the strongest of F1’s four new entries by beating Campos, USF1 and Manor.
“Trulli will bring us a lot of experience to develop the team,” he said. “Heikki is a young driver with a lot of experience so I think we have fantastic drivers. It is a wonderful mix of experience, youth and passion.
"We are not setting any big targets, but we want to at least be the best of the new teams. But I think it shows our seriousness today by announcing two really world-class drivers."
Trulli said he was particularly looking forward to working again with technical director Mike Gascoyne, having worked with the experienced Briton in spells at Renault and Toyota.
“I have been impressed by the long-term vision of the team management and technical staff. Tony has set out very ambitious plans and I am ready to help the team achieve these high targets.
"I am also pleased to be back working alongside Mike Gascoyne, someone with whom I have enjoyed previous success at other teams. I get on very well with him and I respect his working style."
Kovalainen has been impressed with Lotus’s progress in the short time since its launch in September.
“I recently visited our factory and was so impressed by seeing how far the team has come in such a short time since it was launched in September, and by how determined everyone is to meet Tony's ambitious targets.
“I knew immediately it would be a fantastic opportunity to help them achieve their goals."
Malaysian Fairuz Fauzy has been announced as the team’s reserve driver.