Ferrari chairman Luca di Montezemolo says the Italian team must be quicker in qualifying to dethrone triple world champion Sebastian Vettel.
Red Bull's Vettel edged out Ferrari's Fernando Alonso by just three points for the 2012 Formula One drivers' championship.
Red Bull also claimed the constructors' championship for a third consecutive season, but Di Montezemolo is confident Ferrari can build on their momentum at the start of the 2013 campaign.
"Fernando Alonso made an unbelievable, fantastic season, the best of his career and [team-mate] Felipe Massa has finished the championship very strong and this is good news for next year," he said.
"I think Ferrari has been the best in terms of reliability, perfect in the strategies of the pits and the pit stops but we need a car for next year that will put our drivers in the position to start more in front.
"And this is what I've asked my people to do for the entire season.
"I'm pleased to see a Ferrari in that position and we will do our best to win next year because I want to win."
Alonso paid tribute to the determination and commitment of his team and hailed his win in front of a home crowd at the Valencia Grand Prix as the highlight of his season.
"I think it was a very stressful season for all of us," Alonso said.
"We were very close to winning the world championship but we fought until the end.
"We gave the best of us in every single race and we have to be proud, we have to be happy for the achievement and the results we had and next year improve a little bit more.
"To win in the home grand prix is a very unique experience and if you win it starting at the back and not expected to win it was even more emotional.
"It was by far the best moment of the season winning in Valencia and hopefully we can repeat this home win next year."