Renault confirms launch date for RS18

The Renault Formula One team will launch its new car -- the RS18 -- on February 20, the same day as Sauber.

The French manufacturer confirmed the date in a tweet featuring a yellow outline of a Formula One car (including the now mandatory Halo cockpit protection device).

Renault returned to the sport as a full constructor in 2016 and finished sixth in last year's constructors' championship after making steady progress throughout the season.

The team has set a goal of challenging for championships by 2020, giving it two more years to close the still significant gap to F1's front runners. Key to closing that gap will be upgrades to the Renault power unit, which will be used by Red Bull and McLaren this season as well as the works team's RS18s.

In Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz, Renault has its strongest driver line-up since returning to F1, although Sainz is only on loan from Red Bull.

With pre-season testing due to get underway on February 26, seven F1 teams have now set launch dates in the two weeks ahead of the first test.

Confirmed 2018 car launches

February 15 - Williams
February 20 - Sauber
February 20 - Renault
February 22 - Ferrari
February 22 - Mercedes
February 23 - McLaren
February 25 - Toro Rosso