Castrol announces partnership to develop EV fluids

12 December 2021

Automotive lubricants specialist Castrol has entered into a five-year technical partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE) to co-develop electrically-chargeable vehicle (EV) lubricants.

As part of the agreement, Castrol will become the official supplier of EV thermal fluids for WAE’s growing electrification programmes and motorsport activities such as Formula E, Extreme E, ETCR (Electric Touring Car Racing) and the Le Mans Daytona h (LMDh) endurance-car programme. These fluids will be suitable for WAE’s high-performance motorsport batteries from May 2022.

While the partnership will initially focus on WAE’s motorsport activities, the two companies will look to develop a full range of EV Fluids for wider electrification projects covering the aerospace and marine sectors.

Changing times

As the automotive market pushes on down the path of electrification, suppliers of lubricants and other aftermarket products need to adapt to survive. While it is unlikely the internal-combustion engine (ICE) will fade from existence any time soon, the increasing number of EVs on the road means companies must divide their attention between old and new technologies.

For EVs, the need for advanced battery-cooling systems to operate reliably and efficiently is essential. This is an area of importance for lubricants specialists, giving them an inroad into this new market.

WAE supplies systems to various motorsport series. The company was previously owned by the Williams F1 team, until it sold a majority stake to EKM Capital in 2019. The business has a vested interest in developing electrification systems for racing constructors and manufacturers.

The partnership will enable WAE to access the complete Castrol ON product range, which includes EV transmission fluids, EV thermal fluids and EV greases; allowing WAE’s technical teams to access the latest developments in EV fluids for battery-cooling systems, including immersive-cooling technology. Concepts will also be explored to improve second-life performance and the circularity of batteries and fluids.

‘As the world of mobility accelerates towards an electric future, it is essential that we fully understand the requirements and challenges of electrifying all forms of mobility,’ said A.S. Ramchander, vice president, marketing and GAM at Castrol. ‘By partnering with WAE, we hope to support the development of cutting-edge mobility solutions, as well as further advance our EV-fluid technologies.’