Red Bull set a low-key target for 2007 as they unveiled on Friday their first car to be built under the leadership of star designer Adrian Newey.
Mark Webber puts the new Red Bull through its paces at Barcelona
The drinks company's boss, Dietrich Mateschitz, said he wanted the team to secure "a podium here and there" and be fifth in the constructors' title chase.
"We are at least as ambitious where our sporting performance is concerned as we are towards entertainment," he said.
The Renault-powered RB3 contains echoes of some McLaren designs, Newey said.
"Undoubtedly some aspects of RB3 are 'McLaren-esque' and are to some extent a development of the work I was doing when I was there," the 47-year-old Englishman said in a statement.
"In other areas, there are derivatives of what has been done here at Red Bull and, of course, there are some completely fresh ideas."
"We want to challenge for podiums, we want to get in amongst the big boys as often as we can and make a significant step forward," team boss Christian Horner said.
Fifth place is atarget - obviously our ultimate aims go far beyond that
Red Bull team boss
"Fifth place (overall) is obviously a target. To do that, we'd have to beat two manufacturer teams. But I think we've now got the infrastructure and strength in depth to achieve and compete for that.
"Obviously, our ultimate aims go far beyond that."
In anticipation of a major step up in performance, Australian Mark Webber has joined the team from Williams to partner David Coulthard, who is entering his third season with Red Bull.
The team finished seventh last season, with Coulthard securing a sole podium finish in Monaco.
Webber, who has admitted to being disappointed by his two seasons at Williams, said: "I believe I can have a strong year this year.
Webber and Coulthard believe their new car will be competitive
"I am refreshed, different at home apparently. I'm excited. The feeling in the team is good, its healthy.
"There's just a lot of general excitement and everyone's got a spring in their step.
"It's still bloody exciting. We are going up against big manufacturers and we want to get amongst those guys. It's not just tooling around and not being competitive. We want to be competitive this year."
Newey has forged a reputation as the leading racing-car designer in the world after his Williams and McLaren designs dominated the 1990s.
McLaren slumped slightly in the face of Ferrari's domination in the early 2000s, but Newey got them back on course with the fastest car in the field in 2005 before leaving for Red Bull.
The Red Bull will be powered by Renault engines, and the world champions' engine technical director, Rob White, said both teams would use "exactly the same specification" of V8.
"Of course our priority is the works team," White said, "but we will do the best possible job for Red Bull Racing."