Williams is Developing a New Hybrid Drive System for Nissan
In June, Nissan announced a partnership with the Formula One Team Williams which would see the team’s applied science’s division help NISMO develop a new line of performance models. Much was left unanswered about this agreement–not the first signed by a Renault owned division and a major F1 team–but it looks like light is being shed on to the first point of business for these two teams working together: according to Australia’s Carsales, Williams Advanced Engineering is co-developing a next-generation hybrid powertrain for use in a future Nissan GT-R.
This coordination between forces seems an ideal fit, as Williams is the company also directly responsible with supplying hybrid powertrains to manufacturers such as Porsche and Audi for their LeMans series vehicles, and to Jaguar for their C-X75 concept vehicle. Coupling Williams ingenuity with Nissan and NISMO engineering should ensure an other worldly capable Nissan GT-R.
While the news will not be warmly received by all, as there exist today many people who still deride hybrid powertrain systems due to their inability to see the performance potential of a system more well known for fuel efficiency, it’s certainly coming to the GT-R with boatloads of potential. The benefits of a hybrid system have been demonstrated repeatedly, most recently and maybe most famously in the incredible Porsche 918 which set a new Nurburgring lap time record.
Even with this information, questions still remain concerning the Williams hybrid system that the GT-R will feature. Whether Williams and Nismo will settle on a flywheel-based energy recovery system or a more conventional battery-powered system remains to be seen. And what other aspects of development Williams aids in is a wonderful question to ponder. With their F1 background and incredible race pedigree, it will be exciting to see if they lend their composites and aerodynamics expertise to the next generation of the one of the world’s most impressive and capable sportscars to craft something even greater.