Gene Haas has dismissed the notion that his squad will act as a Ferrari junior team when it joins the Formula 1 grid in 2016.
Haas has developed a technical collaboration with Ferrari and will field the Italian marque's current test driver Esteban Gutierrez alongside Romain Grosjean.
"I don't see us in the 'junior team' team position," he told the official F1 website.
"If we are out there we want to beat them. We would not back down. But, of course, I would not mind finishing behind the Ferrari at every race!
"That wouldn't be bad. In this sport technical partnership is one thing and racing another. I don't feel like a junior team and we don't want to be a junior team. A good part of the car is our design, so there is enough to say that we are an independent team."
Haas expressed his positivity with the pairing of Grosjean and Gutierrez as the team prepares for its 2016 debut.
"We were looking for people who are on the same page as us," he explained.
"And both Romain and Esteban fit our particular profile. I am sure that they are both very hungry and don't have that 'super ego' like these super champions - and they are still young enough to learn. Well, I hope they learn from each other!"