APRIL 26, 2007

Mercedes plans new F1 engine factory

Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines (HPE), formerly known as Ilmor Engineering, the firm that designs, develops and manufactures Mercedes F1 engines is planning to build a new testing facility at its headquarters in Brixworth. If the project gets full planning permission it will mean that all the company's activities will come under one roof. The plan also involves around 80 jobs in Stuttgart being transferred to Britain to consolidate all the engine-building activities in one place. The German operation has until now been doing much advanced research and producing prototype engines at Unterturkheim.

The work at Brixworth will include new parking bays for the racing trucks and the refit of the current factory with the installation of mezzanine floors for meeting rooms and office space. The company currently employs 450 designers, engineers and support staff at several locations in Brixworth. The project is currently through consultation with the local authorities and a planning application will follow shortly.

HPE is now entirely separate from the new Ilmor Engineering which is housed in a different facility, albeit close to the F1 factory, which continues to work on other racing projects, notably IRL and NASCAR engine tuning. Its MotoGP project seems to have now been terminated.