Jean-Eric Vergne believes Toro Rosso focus has changed, moving away from a small team mindset to one that wants to be a top-five outfit.
In recent years Toro Rosso have failed to make any notable impact on the standings, finishing either eighth or ninth in the last four years.
However, with a host of new regulations, including the introduction of 1.6-litre V6 engines, Vergne reckons this could be the season that Toro Rosso's improved mentality could yield the results.
"I think it changed a lot," he said in an interview with Crash.net. "Especially from last year to this year the change is massive.
"Of course there are the new rules; we have the new engine supplier so the work relationship with Renault is a lot different. Obviously for me they're French so it is really good to be with them and to be able to talk a lot; I think the relationship is already getting quite good.
"I think the mentality has changed. It definitely wants to be a good team that can fight in the top five teams more often - compared to last year and compared to other years previously - and therefore they needed to make a lot of changes.
"Change in Formula One doesn't arrive in one year, it is still a long process that is going on and the curve going up is quite impressive from Toro Rosso."
The Frenchman, though, admits it is up to Toro Rosso to put together a run of results that demonstrate the improvements.
"I really hope that this year everybody will see that it definitely improved a lot because last year I don't think was a good year for us. We haven't shown any progression even though everything in the team was changing."