Williams says the FW45 is philosophically an evolution of FW44 with sidepod showcasing a major change as they add more on James Vowles as F1 team boss.

While Williams did not reveal the ‘full-spec’ F1 2023 car during its launch event which was more to showcase the new livery and its larger partnership with Gulf Oil, the team has touched upon the changes on FW45 which will be philosophically an evolution of FW44.

Williams only had one larger update last year as they struggled with weight issues majorly alongside porpoising and the usual aero troubles. That one update did help, as they put their efforts on FW45 which should carry a different sidepod package.

The ‘real’ car will be first seen in a shakedown at Silverstone on February 13, which will showcase how the FW45 will be for the 2023 season. “It’s philosophically an evolution; visibly, well you’ll see, but obviously the regulation changes around the new floor dominate some of it,” said Williams head of engineering, Dave Robson.

“I think the other thing that you’ll find that is most obvious is a bit of an update to the sidepod package, which as an evolution to what we did for the Silverstone [2022] upgrade package, but we were a bit constrained then by the radiator layout and not wanting to completely change that.”

Williams team driver Alexander Albon noted about certain carry over where they are focusing on clearing out the issues they faced. “I think it’ll take time,” he said. “It doesn’t happen over one year, as much as we wish it did. There’s still a learning process… cars tend to have a language or almost a DNA, all cars do through the years.

“It doesn’t matter if there’s regulations changes or not, they will tend to have the same characteristics year to year and we’re just trying to get that rolling pin and get [those problems] out,” summed up Albon, who is another ‘constant’ in the team alongside Robson, with the team welcoming new team principal Vowles as Jost Capito’s replacement.

For Robson, it will be about Vowles finishing off the journey they started to get back in the midfield first. He is looking forward to working under him and hopes the wealth of experience from Mercedes will be useful for Williams to take the step ahead.

“I think it’s very important for the team to have someone who now finishes off that journey and brings us forward again,” said Robson. “When he arrives in a couple of weeks’ time we’ll find out what he’s got planned. I think what he does bring is obviously a wealth of experience from Mercedes and its incarnations before that.

“He knows what it takes to be at the top and stay at the top. I think personally, he’s very ambitious, he’s clearly very smart, so we’re looking forward to getting him onboard and letting him direct us on the next bit of the journey,” summed up Robson.

Here’s Williams’ 2023 livery

Here’s Jack Aitken on bidding F1/Williams goodbye

Here’s James Vowles on what he can do to take Williams forward

Here’s Jamie Chadwick sticking with Williams academy

Here’s James Vowles and Toto Wolff on the Williams move

Here’s news of James Vowles joining Williams