Red Bull have announced a 9 February launch date – the earliest of any team so far – and nine days before rivals Mercedes.
It will be Red Bull’s first design following a huge overhaul of the sport’s regulations – aimed at bringing the field closer and encouraging greater racing – and the machine Verstappen will use to defend his title.
Verstappen, 24, beat Lewis Hamilton in controversial circumstances at last season’s decider in Abu Dhabi.
The Dutchman, who will race with the number one on his car, will be partnered for a second season at Red Bull by Sergio Perez.
Red Bull’s announcement leaves only Williams and Haas to reveal their launch dates, with eight of the grid’s 10 teams having scheduled theirs.
The first pre-season test starts in Barcelona on 23 February with Verstappen opening his championship defence in Bahrain on 20 March.