The Faenza based team has not named a launch date for the STR8, but 23-year-old Ricciardo said in a Skype interview from his native Australia that the car will be running as soon as the pre-season period kicks off in early February at Jerez.
"I'll be driving the first day, so the fifth of Feb, so not long at all -- three weeks I think. Can't wait," said Ricciardo, who over the New Year holiday period has grown a beard.
AAP news agency said Perth-born Australian is due to return to Italy this week for a seat fitting.
"It (the beard) will come off," he grinned.
"I've been living the beach lifestyle and haven't been bothered to pick up a razor in a while.
"I'll get rid of it. I've got to look young again."