The Williams FW29 was a Formula One car, built by the Williams F1 team that competed in the 2007 Formula One season. It was driven by Alexander Wurz and Nico Rosberg. The car had a Toyota engine, making it only the second time in the team's history that a Japanese car manufacturer has supplied their engines; Honda had supplied the team during the period from 1983 to 1987.
|Designer(s)||Sam Michael (Technical Director)|
Ed Wood (Chief Designer)
Loïc Bigois (Chief Aerodynamicist)
|Chassis||Carbon aramid monocoque|
|Suspension (front)||Double wishbone with pushrod torsion spring linkage|
|Suspension (rear)||As front.|
|Engine||Toyota RVX-07 2396 cc V8. Naturally aspirated mid-mounted|
|Transmission||Williams 7-speed, semi-automatic seamless-shift|
|Power||755 hp @ 19,000 rpm|
|Notable entrants||AT&T Williams|
|Notable drivers||16. Nico Rosberg|
17. Alexander Wurz
17. Kazuki Nakajima
|Debut||2007 Australian Grand Prix|
The FW29 made its debut at the first testing session at Jerez, where Alexander Wurz completed 72 laps in the new Toyota powered car and was second fastest of a sixteen car session, only fractions slower than fastest Pedro de la Rosa of McLaren. "We had two cars on track straight away with Alex and Nico," said Sam Michael, Williams's Technical Director. "Completing 611km in total on the first running day with no issues with temperatures, vibrations etc., is a good start. Motivation within the team is really high and everyone is pushing hard to get the best out of the car before the first Grand Prix. Both drivers started testing different set-up packages before midday as there are some interesting new directions with this car and the Bridgestone Potenza tyres."
The FW29 continued the blue and white colour scheme set by previous Williams cars with a number of sponsors, such as RBS and Reuters, being retained for the 2007 season along with a number of new sponsors, including the team's new title sponsors AT&T as well as Lenovo, a computer manufacturer from China.
The FW29 had a number of changes from the preceding FW28. The suspension was zero keel configuration, which had become industry standard. Other notable elements of the design included another step in the undercut of the sidepod leading edge, with top louvres for cooling. The engine and exhaust underwent improvements to address the reliability issues experienced in 2006 and a lower and narrower top deck for improved aerodynamic efficiency. The other prominent differences from the FW28 included large chimneys expressly for cooling at the season's first three races in Australia; Malaysia and Bahrain, and a narrower engine cover spine.
At the rear of the car, a twin pillar configuration supported a lighter and lower drag rear wing, now featuring FIA-mandatory slot gap separators to prevent deflection and a lower and wider rear impact structure as required by the regulations.
The Williams FW29 was definitely an improvement over the disastrous Williams FW28, which only scored 11 points and was hugely unreliable. The FW29 proved a consistent challenger for points, but was well off the pace of the front running McLaren and Ferrari cars, and the new BMW Sauber team formed by Williams's old engine partners. Alexander Wurz had a mixed season, achieving an unlikely podium finish at the 2007 Canadian Grand Prix despite suffering a damaged rear wing caused by a collision with Vitantonio Liuzzi but had an unsuccessful second half of the season. However, Rosberg proved to be a faster driver, scoring frequent points finishes and consistently outpacing Wurz, particularly in the 2nd half of the season. Wurz decided to retire from F1 before the final race of the season, with test driver Kazuki Nakajima drafted in as his replacement. The team were classified in 4th place with 33 points, due to McLaren's expulsion from the Championship.
Williams appeared with the FW29B at Jerez during the winter testing at in January 2008. The car was fitted with several aerodynamic changes which would be adopted on the FW30. Both Rosberg and Nakajima tested with the car.
Complete Formula One resultsEdit
(key) (results in bold indicate pole position)
- "The Williams-Toyota FW29 technical specification". Archived from the original on 2007-02-16. Retrieved 2007-02-16.
- "Engine Toyota". www.statsf1.com. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
- "First impressions - Williams is quick". GrandPrix.com. February 7, 2007. Retrieved 2007-02-07.
- Principessa (February 2, 2007). "Williams launches the FW29". f1Technical.net. Retrieved 2007-02-08.
- "Williams Jerez test notes 2008-01-14". Motorsport.com. Retrieved 28 September 2022.