Marussia are targeting points after scoring their best finish of the season with Timo Glock taking 12th in the Singapore Grand Prix.
The team recently introduced a host of big updates and the result saw them move above Caterham into 10th in the constructors' championship.
"We were pretty nervous during the race, but you have to take your chances and we did", said CEO Graeme Lowden.
"We have a good car now and I think we're ahead of our nearest rivals."
Marussia have yet to score points since they made their debut in 2010, when they competed under the Virgin Racing name.
The team, who have been without Kers this season but will use a Williams unit next year, have struggled to keep pace with fellow new team Caterham, but appear to have turned a corner in Singapore.
"We want to score points like any other team," added Lowden. "If any team finish the year without points your constructors' position goes off your highest single finish.
"Ours is 12th [which is currently better than Caterham] so that could give us 10th place overall in the championship and that is important for commercial rights, ie money."
Glock added: "In general, we knew we had a strong car here. I'm very happy to drive here, I love this track.
"My target was to be as close to Heikki [Kovalainen of Caterham] in the first stint but then I pushed too much and kissed the wall a bit. When the safety car came out, it mixed it up and I was right in the battle again."
Ferrari's Felipe Massa and Bruno Senna of Williams came close to making contact when battling for ninth place after the second safety-car re-start.
The Ferrari driver pulled alongside the Williams at Turn 13, but the two made contact, causing Massa to touch the barriers.
However, the Brazilian managed to control the car and make the move stick.
"That was not nice," said Massa, who finished eighth. "I was already on his side and he pushed his car over my car and I went to the wall.
"Fortunately nothing happened with my car. I'm a little more calm now. Anyway, it was a great race for me."
Senna added: "I didn't realise he was there. I was trying to cover inside. It was a racing incident. Unfortunately I touched his car, but fortunately nothing happened to our cars. I've already apologised to him."
While Mercedes team-mate Michael Schumacher crashed out, Nico Rosberg made up five places on his grid start to finish fifth.
"Everything worked out really well," said the German. "We had a good strategy, decent tyre management, decent pace and fifth is a good result and lots of points. I'm confident we can improve further and further."
While Mark Webber was demoted to 11th for an infringement when overtaking Kamui Kobayashi during the race, his fellow Australian Daniel Ricciardo had better luck.
The Toro Rosso driver finished ninth to equal his best result of the season.
"It's really good to get points," said Ricciardo. "We've had a really good start to the second half of the season, fighting for points if not getting them.
"We benefited a bit from the safety car, but had to hold off cars behind us afterwards. I'm really happy with ninth place."
Pastor Maldonado delivered a brilliant lap to qualify second, but ran out of luck in the race.
The Venezuelan kept his nose clean at the start, but dropped to fourth. The second safety car period didn't work out for him and he lost six positions before the team asked him to retire the car as he had a hydraulic problem.
"Today was difficult," said Maldonado. "Our pace was looking strong, as we were expecting, but then we had a hydraulic problem and that was the end of our race.
"I'm now confident for the next race as we have the potential to be fighting for victories and I hope to have a better race in Japan."