£8 million technical centre for Williams

Published Date: 16th Jul 2014

David Cameron praised a new Williams technical centre aimed at spreading F1 know-how into the wider car industry, and has been officially opened by the prime minister.

While Welcoming the prime minister to the new building in Grove,  in Oxfordshire, Frank Williams explained he was "immensely proud" that the very specific skills possessed by his 600 employees would now be spread even further.

Last year's Jaguar C-X75 hybrid supercar featured mostly Williams’s technology - in fact, the tech centre building was first proposed as a works for building a 200-strong production run.


Williams has been involved in advanced engineering work as long ago as the Metro 6R4 rally car, and has run a number of programmes, mostly race-based, recently providing energy recovery systems for Audi and Porsche's Le Mans cars.

Now, a wide variety of aerospace, automotive and static power generation projects are being brought together in the new centre, under a new management led by managing director Craig Wilson, formerly of TWR.

Williams have recently had a hand in the development Nismo's "time attack" GTR which set a new class record at the Nürburgring. It has also been appointed official battery developer and supplier for the Formula E electric single seater race series, due to begin this year.

Boss Craig Wilson said he already has around 150 engineers working on different projects, and expects the pace of work to accelerate, now that the new premises are fully equipped and staffed. "We can't say too much about our customers or their projects," he said, "but what makes us special is the culture of speed and confidence we bring from F1. It's more relevant now than ever."

After unveiling a plaque at the site, David Cameron told an audience of Williams employees, dignitaries and suppliers that the new tech centre was "the perfect example" of Britain doing what it was good at. "Keep on staying at the top," he advised Frank Williams and his team. "That's how this country is going to succeed"