Williams Want Engine Decision this Month

Williams want a decision on next year's engine supply within the month after BMW's decision to buy Sauber, says team boss Frank Williams

Williams Want Engine Decision this Month

"I would like an answer by week 30. We are now in week 26," he told reporters at the French Grand Prix.

BMW motorsport director Mario Theissen said the Munich-based carmaker, who have been Williams' Formula One engine partners since 2000, had just started discussions with the team about continuing their supply. "We don't have a decision," he said.

BMW, who had an engine partnership deal with Williams until 2009, announced last month that they would take over the Swiss-based Sauber team from next January.

Williams said that decision had not hit them "like a bolt out of the blue".

"We knew what was coming, or might come, and we had plenty of time to persuade otherwise but we failed," he said.

BMW have said they are willing to continue supplying Williams, who have been talking to other engine makers since it became increasingly clear that the relationship was growing strained.

Theissen said that if the team decided to go elsewhere, BMW would not actively look to supply anyone else: "We wouldn't rush for another customer."

Same Engine

Williams' Australian driver Mark Webber said before Sunday's race that the team should move on rather than accept a second-string arrangement.

"I think what he means is that if it's not going to work, because BMW are going to do their own team, maybe a fresh start might be a good opportunity for Williams to start all over again," said Williams.

Williams have won nine constructors' Championships and seven drivers' titles since 1980 and the team boss said he believed a non-manufacturer team could still be successful in a sport increasingly dominated by major carmakers.

"Mario has said several times that it is just too complicated to make a best engine for one's own race team and a downgraded engine for the other team," he said.

Theissen agreed, particularly with engine rules changing next year from a three-litre V10 format to a 2.4-litre V8 -- although teams are allowed to continue with rev-limited V10s as a cost-saving measure.

"You might be able to (supply different engines) and it might be cost-saving at first because you might have some V10 engines in stock," he said.

"But to run a complete, competitive season you would have to develop the V10 as well as the V8 and you would always have to make fresh engines. It doesn't really make sense."

 

shares
comments
Mercedes Not Interested in Own Team

Previous article

Mercedes Not Interested in Own Team

Next article

Bourdais Hopes to be Next French Driver

Bourdais Hopes to be Next French Driver
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Williams
Author Alan Baldwin
How Brabham’s one-hit wonder was boxed into a corner Plus

How Brabham’s one-hit wonder was boxed into a corner

The Brabham BT46B raced once, won once, then vanished – or did it? STUART CODLING reveals the story of the car which was never actually banned…

The changes Barcelona needs to provide a modern-day F1 spectacle Plus

The changes Barcelona needs to provide a modern-day F1 spectacle

Formula 1’s visits to Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya over recent years have been met with familiar criticisms despite tweaks here and there to the track to improve racing. With the 2021 Spanish Grand Prix largely going the same way, proper solutions need to be followed to achieve F1’s wider targets

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Often described as Formula 1's laboratory, the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona gave the clearest demonstration yet of the pecking order in 2021. And it's the key discrepancies from that order which illuminate who is excelling, and who needs to hit the reset button

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
How Red Bull’s deja vu set Hamilton on the winning path in Spain Plus

How Red Bull’s deja vu set Hamilton on the winning path in Spain

An aggressive first corner move from Max Verstappen appeared to have set the Red Bull driver on course for victory in the Spanish Grand Prix. But canny strategy from Mercedes - combined with the absence of Red Bull's number two from the lead group - allowed Lewis Hamilton to pull off a demoralising reversal

Formula 1
May 10, 2021
The toe-in-water origins of Lotus’s groundbreaking F1 journey Plus

The toe-in-water origins of Lotus’s groundbreaking F1 journey

In the first part of our history of Lotus, DAMIEN SMITH recalls how Formula 1 wasn’t an immediate priority for team founder Colin Chapman – but once he got a taste for it he just couldn’t stop…

Formula 1
May 9, 2021
How Hamilton’s qualifying record compares to Senna and Schumacher Plus

How Hamilton’s qualifying record compares to Senna and Schumacher

Lewis Hamilton has just become the first driver to record 100 world championship Formula 1 pole positions. Time to revisit a debate we discussed when he reached 150 front row starts in 2020.

Formula 1
May 8, 2021
Why sustainability is being mandated by F1 Plus

Why sustainability is being mandated by F1

Continuing to be socially acceptable as public views shift globally is vitally important to the future of motor racing, says PAT SYMONDS - especially in Formula 1, the championship that represents the technological peak

Formula 1
May 8, 2021
The Barcelona practice times that prove Red Bull's title credentials, and heap pressure on Verstappen Plus

The Barcelona practice times that prove Red Bull's title credentials, and heap pressure on Verstappen

Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes led the way in Friday practice for the 2021 Spanish Grand Prix, but there was one big encouraging sign for Red Bull. The trouble is, it looks like making good on that gain will require its superstar driver to avoid repeating a mistake made today that left him well down the FP2 order

Formula 1
May 7, 2021