Renault can have the fourth-fastest car in Formula 1 by the end of the 2017 season, according to its drivers Jolyon Palmer and Nico Hulkenberg.
Renault has targeted fifth in the constructors' championship this year, its second since returning to F1 with a works team.
It is part of a tight midfield battle with Williams, Force India, Toro Rosso and Haas, with 11th-placed Nico Hulkenberg narrowly missing out on a point in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix.
McLaren's ongoing issues with engine partner Honda has opened the door to a smaller team being best of the rest behind Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull this season.
Palmer told Autosport Renault's resources as a manufacturer can move it to the head of the midfield group over the course of the season.
"The target was top five but where we're starting is quite close to that," he said.
"It's very, very tight - Williams is a little bit ahead, but we've got the resource to move through the year and aim for that fourth spot.
"Maybe not in terms of final position, but at least in terms of performance in the latter part of the year."
The Briton said he was eager to see the progress Renault can make with its first completely-new F1 car, after running a revised version of Lotus's 2015 machine last year.
"You can visibly see what's going on in the factory and there are points of downforce coming all the time," he said.
"It's quite exciting.
"That's where as a team we're in quite a strong position - I know what's coming for us.
"I can't speak for everyone else but we should be making progress."
HULKENBERG: DOWN TO RENAULT EARN FOURTH
Haas driver Romain Grosjean qualified sixth in Melbourne, while in the race Williams, Force India and Toro Rosso all scored points.
Hulkenberg accepts Renault is "at the back of that bunch" at the moment, but agreed with Palmer that fourth is a realistic target.
"It is close," Hulkenberg said. "The race is on basically between all those teams.
"I think it is realistic but we need obviously to do the right things and in terms of the development, bring the right parts and use the right tools to go there."
He stressed Renault could not take its status as a works team for granted in the development race.
"It's definitely a benefit to have more and bigger resources," he said.
"We have to make them work as well, it's not just about quantity - it's about quality.
"We'll have to prove we can do it."