Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas today opened PETRONAS’ new $60 million Global Research & Technology (R&T) centre in Turin, Italy. Acting as the global hub for PETRONAS Lubricants International’s (PLI) R&T activity, the centre will be home to PLI’s automotive and industrial technology testing capabilities and expertise.
PLI is responsible for the design, development and delivery of the Fluid Technology Solutions (FTS) that have powered Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport to four consecutive Drivers’ and Constructors’ titles.
Lewis and Valtteri were joined by Toto Wolff and Andy Cowell at the state-of-the-art facility, which will play a significant part in the development of fuels for the next generation of road car engines using technology tested and proven on the race track.
“This event brings together many of the most exciting strands of PLI’s development and showcases them in what we believe is now the most advanced R&T centre of its kind in our industry,” said Giuseppe D’Arrigo, Group Chief Executive Officer of PLI.
“As a company, PLI is dedicated to moving the world with better, more efficient fluid technology solutions. Our success in achieving that goal leads to the success of our customers and partners, which is exemplified by Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Motorsport’s tally of four consecutive Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championship titles. All of these successes have been supported by PLI here in Turin, where the most technologically rigorous sporting series in the world acts as another laboratory for our technical development.”
“FTS is the cornerstone of the technology that enables our partners like the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS Motorsport team to maximize their winning potential every time they go out on the track. Our track-to-road engineering has been mutually beneficial for both PETRONAS and Mercedes in developing products for their customers,” said PETRONAS Vice President of Downstream Marketing, Dato Sri Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohd Tahir.
Turin is the latest R&T centre of excellence that PLI has established around the world, joining the $100 million investment in a lubricant blending plant and satellite R&T centre for motorcycle lubricants at Patalganga in Maharashtra, India, and its 50 per cent stake in the Guangxi Nanning Yuchai PETRONAS Lube Co Ltd Research & Development (R&D) Centre in China’s Guangxi province.
PLI’s global business aspiration is anchored on technology as a fundamental differentiator to drive sustainable growth, by focusing on delivering innovative products. The role of its new centre in Turin will be to introduce new technologies, create world-class infrastructure and develop industry-leading talent as it diversifies its product portfolio to strengthen its global position in the fluids industry.
“PETRONAS demonstrates through Formula One that it is a world leader in the global fluids industry – and this new facility reflects the scale of the company’s ambitious development programme,” said Toto Wolff, Team Principal & CEO of Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport.
“After visiting this state-of-the-art facility in Turin, and meeting the talented scientists who will be working here, it’s clear how committed PETRONAS is to invest in an even brighter future through research and technology.
“As a racing team, we are responsible for developing the next generation of technologies for the world’s leading automotive manufacturer – and our mission is mirrored by PLI’s new Global R&T Centre in Turin.”
Lewis Hamilton said: “It’s been years in the making so it’s great to get a feel for how this amazing facility is coming to life. PETRONAS is a central pillar of our team and every success that we earn has been achieved together. It is very important to place the achievements that we make on the track into the bigger picture, and this new facility represents the depth of technology which is the lifeblood that powers our cars.“
Speaking at the event Valtteri Bottas said: “PETRONAS’ new Global Research and Technology Centre is about developing new technology solutions that will take us further, and do so with even greater awareness of our responsibility to use energy in efficient ways.”