Lotus have placed Ferrari's ousted Brazilian Felipe Massa on their list of possible replacements for Kimi Raikkonen as the Finn takes his seat at the Italian team.
Speaking on Wednesday, Lotus boss Eric Boullier confirmed Massa's manager Nicolas Todt has been in touch with the team over what Todt described as 'the best seat left' for 2014.
"What is certain is that other teams are interested in Felipe," Todt told Canal Plus.
"Felipe will never play second fiddle in a small team, so what we need to do is find him a car that allows him to play a leading role in Formula One. For sure, the best team today, the most interesting seat, is the one left behind by Raikkonen.
"After that, is it the only interesting seat? We'll see. It will be important to pay attention and be responsive in the coming weeks."
However, Massa does face some stiff competition for that Lotus seat - notably from Nico Hulkenberg. The young German has been on Lotus' radar for a while and was described as the Plan-B for the team if Raikkonen left.
Boullier told RMC Sport: "Felipe Massa is also available, so he is inevitably on the list.
"But let's not go too fast in activating the 'plan B'. We are the only team left with a good seat available, and so inevitably this will affect many people."
Hulkenberg had been on some peoples list as a possible Ferrari candidate for 2014 but after Raikkonen's appointment it has been revealed Ferrari text messaged the German to tell him the bad news.
"After two months of negotiations, I expected at least a phone call," Hulkenberg's manager Werner Heinz told Germany's Auto Motor und Sport.
One thing that does now seem certain is with Raikkonen gone his current team-mate Romain Grosjean will keep his seat for another season.
"It can be good for him (Grosjean) because after growing for two years next to a world champion, he can unite the team and build it around him and prove he can be the leader," said Boullier.
"It can be an opportunity for him," he added, "but he must finish the championship well."
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