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Country of origin:Great Britain
Produced in:1992
Numbers built:6
Designed by:Patrick Head and Adrian Newey for Williams
Predecessor:Williams FW14 Renault
Successor:Williams FW15C Renault
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:June 26, 2019
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Click here to download printer friendly versionHalfway through the 1990 season, talented designer Adrian Newey stepped up from the small March Formula 1 team to Williams. Built on a shoestring budget, his first F1 cars had already shown great potential. With the resources available at Williams, Newey could finally show the full potential of his aerodynamically highly efficient design philosophy. It turned out to be the start of a hugely successful partnership between Williams, Newey and engine-supplier Renault.

Built around Renault's very powerful yet reliable V10 engine, the first Newey designed Williams was the FW14 that debuted at the 1991 season opening United States Grand Prix. It used the narrow chassis design that Newey had so successfully used for Leyton House liveried Marches. Suspension was double wishbones with push-rod actuated springs and dampers on all four corners. Following Ferrari's example, the FW14 boasted a paddle-operated, semi-automatic, six-speed gearbox.

Tasked to drive the FW14 were Nigel Mansell and Riccardo Patrese. At its debut, the new Williams immediately was among the most advanced and fastest cars on the grid. Unfortunately, it was not quite as reliable as its closest rival; Ayrton Senna's McLaren MP4/6. The new paddle-operated gearbox proved to be the FW14's weak link. Mansell and Patrese nevertheless managed to win seven races between them and Williams ended the 1991 season second in the manufacturers' standings behind McLaren.

For the 1992 season, the all-new FW15 was under development but it was never raced. Instead, Williams opted to run the FW14B development car that had been developed during the second half of the 1991 season. The most significant difference was the use of a fully active suspension system created in-house by Steve Wise. This allowed the car to stay level at all time and make the most of Newey's efficient aerodynamics package. The elaborate electronics package also included a traction control system.

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  Article Image gallery (40) Chassis (2) Specifications User Comments (1)