BMW's Nick Heidfeld believes his team is capable of challenging the pace-setting Brawn GP entries for both the Driver's and Constructor's titles despite a disappointing showing in Melbourne.
"I think the car is strong enough to fight Brawn, who are leading the pack right now," the German told Malaysia's New Strait Times.
?I think if we can score points now despite maybe not having the best car yet, we hope to be able to fight with them later in the season.?
Heidfeld and teammate Robert Kubica struggled for grip throughout the Melbourne race weekend, failing to post competitive times in practice.
But after consulting with their drivers, the BMW engineers were able to adjust to the fluctuating track conditions, ensuring the duo had capable machines under them on race day.
Heidfeld said the remarkable improvement BMW displayed at Albert Park has given them confidence they can challenge for points at this weekend's Malaysian GP at Sepang.
?I had a good start (in Melbourne) and a good fuel load on board as I was not in the (qualifying) top-10. It could have been a very good result for us,? he said.
"I hope we will leave with some points. We had a good chance last weekend with Robert running in a good position until the crash. I was unfortunate when someone drove into my back in turn one.
"I don't like to expect things but we know what we can do and will try to do our best. Of course we don't know what the outcome will be."