Nissan's performance arm Nismo will join forces with the William's F1 team to co-develop road cars, it has been confirmed.
No details of the collaboration have been released, beyond the fact the two firms will work together and will launch their first product in 2014. Williams will conduct the work under the auspices of its Williams Advanced Engineering division, and Nissan says it was chosen because of its expertise in aerodynamics, simulation and material science. Williams is also a world leader in hybrid technology, and played a pivotal role in developing the Jaguar C-X75 hypercar prototype.
"Williams has a proven history of making racing technology benefit road cars, and we look forward to a period of intensive product development for Nismo," said Shoichi Miyatani, president of Nismo.
Thus far Nismo's products have targetted mainstream performance car buyers. Although they have sold well, Nismo is known to feel that it needs to produce an outright performance car in order to cement its credentials against more focused rivals. However, it was previously thought that the hardcore Nissan GT-R Nismo that's expected to be revealed at the Tokyo motor show this year would perform that role.
Nissan has also stated a long-term ambition to run at Le Mans in the headline LMP1 category. Although its recent DeltaWing projects have been co-ordinated by the highly regarded Ray Mallock Limited (RML) squad, developing such a car under the auspices of an F1 team could be appealing.
Williams boss Frank Williams said: "This partnership is particularly exciting because of the ambition and potential of the Nismo brand. Both parties share a passion for racing and cutting-edge technology and this collaboration will see us work closely together to develop cars that will be at the very pinnacle of automotive technology."