The Gunners currently sit two points above Chelsea at the head of England's top tier after a strong start to the season, and are looking to win their first league crown since going the campaign unbeaten in 2004.
Arteta feels that Arsenal's time could be now due to the contemporary open nature of the English top flight, but would be disappointed to just make the top four.
"No, I wouldn't take it, I always expected us to do better than fourth place," Arteta told talkSPORT. "It's very pleasing [to be top] and it takes a lot of pressure off.
"We know how we've been over the last few seasons and how difficult it is to go into every game knowing how far away you are from your opponents. This is where we want to be and we will fight hard to stay where we are. You need that degree of toughness, we have had difficult moments in different periods of games, and when you manage to get the points at the end despite that, it increases your confidence and makes a massive difference.
"We want to maintain where we are now, it's the most open Premier League title in years because of the quality of the players and the teams. We want to challenge and I think we're able to do it because we have the quality and the desire, but there's still a long way to go."
Arsenal host Liverpool on Saturday before travelling to Manchester United the following weekend.