The Williams FW40 was designed by and attributed to Pat Symonds despite him leaving before the beginning of the 2017 Formula 1 season along with Williams’ Head of aerodynamics, Jason Somerville who’d been with the team for six years.
Other than modifications to the bodywork to ensure the FW40 complied with the new regulations for 2017 the car looked similar to its predecessor and aerodynamically very safe with Williams’ Rob Smedley claiming this was intentional in an effort to avoid the issues the team encountered in 2018 when trying more complex upgrades.
In pre-season testing, Williams appeared to have designed themselves another very aerodynamically efficient car, with the FW40 routinely recording the top speed through the speed traps.
However, overall lap times weren’t startling and it was expected they’d find themselves in the midfield come the season opener in Australia.
Williams focussed a lot of their energies pre-season trying to better understand the new for 2017, wider Pirelli tyres that they thought would be the key to unlocking a serious performance advantage throughout the season.
The car, once again featured the same striking Martini livery as in previous years.
The Bottas/Williams relationship looked set to continue for 2017 until World Champion Nico Rosberg announced his retirement and Valtteri Bottas was coaxed to Mercedes as his replacement.
With Canadian Lance Stroll contracted to partner Bottas for 2017, Massa was due to retire until Bottas’ Williams seat became vacant and his retirement was postponed for another year in order to complete Williams’ driver lineup.
In the hands of Felipe Massa in what would be his last season in Formula 1 and debutant Lance Stroll, the Williams FW40 finished every race of the 2017 Formula 1 season.
Lance Stroll scored his first podium in Formula 1 in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, on the way to securing 5th spot in the World Constructors Championship for the team.
Williams FW40 Specs
|Williams Martini Racing
|Felipe Massa, Lance Stroll
|Mercedes 1.6 litre hybrid turbo V6
|AP 6 piston front and 4 piston rear calipers. Carbon pads & discs
|Williams 8-speed seamless sequential semi-automatic shift (plus reverse), gear selection electro-hydraulically actuated
Williams FW40 Results