Ferrari technical director James Allison has admitted that the team's performance in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix was not acceptable.
The team collected 18 points in Australia courtesy of fourth for Fernando Alonso and seventh for Kimi Raikkonen to sit third in the constructors' championship.
Allison says that while Ferrari was pleased with the reliability o the F14T, they have to work hard to catch up with rivals Mercedes.
"While we can take some satisfaction from the reliability shown by the F14T, it is clear that we have our work cut out to improve our car in order to compete on equal terms with the Mercedes team," said Allison.
"There is plenty about the F14T that is working very well: The starts and the pace in the corners – especially the high speed ones – are particular strong points, but we need to work further on the stability under braking and the speed on the straights."
Allison is anticipating an even more intense development rate than usual in Formula 1.
"All the recent seasons in F1 have been characterised by a fierce development battle from March until November," he said. "With all the new regulations this year, the opportunities to improve the car are legion and we can expect the race to improve the cars to be even more intense than normal.
"Our competitiveness was not acceptable in Melbourne. But we intend to fight our way back up the grid with the improvements that we will bring to the car."
Team principal Stefano Domenicali agrees that Ferrari has a deficit to Mercedes.
"We achieved our objective in terms of reliability, but the gap we need to make up, especially to Mercedes, was clear to see," he said. "The information we have gathered clearly points to the direction we must take and what areas need the most work. It will be important to catch up as quickly as possible and react in the way this team has always proved capable of doing."