Andy Cowell is Managing Director of Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains. He is a Fellow of both the IMechE and the Royal Academy of Engineering. He was born on 12 February, 1969, in Blackpool, England.
When asked for his motivation to start working in F1, Andy explains that it is a childhood dream come true: “I wanted to work in Formula One because of my childhood addiction to motorsport, helping my Dad compete in sprints and hillclimbs and avidly watching Formula One on the TV.”
Andy’s career path was set after a year spent on the Reynard Scholarship Scheme during his Mechanical Engineering degree. He joined Cosworth Racing Ltd. on their graduate scheme straight from university and worked his way through the company’s various technical departments before specializing in the design and development of Formula One engines.
By 1998, Andy was leading the engineering project group responsible for the top end of the innovative CK engine, as raced to victory by Stewart-Ford in 1999. He spent a year with BMW Motorsport in 2000, managing the engineering group responsible for the concept and detail of the 2001 BMW-Williams engine.
Andy returned to Cosworth as Principal Engineer for F1 design and development in 2001, managing new engine projects in 2001 and 2003, before joining the company then known as Mercedes-Ilmor in 2004 as Principal Engineer for the FQ V10 engine project.
14 years later, he remembers joining the Mercedes family as follows: “On my first day with the team, I felt privileged to be working with such a capable group and apprehensive about my ability to positively contribute.”
He worked as Chief Engineer on Ilmor’s V8 engine project before taking on responsibility for the technical and programme leadership of all engine projects – including the KERS Hybrid system, which made its race debut in 2009 and for which the company was subsequently awarded the prestigious Dewar Trophy by the Royal Automobile Club.
Andy subsequently served as Engineering and Programme Director for Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines from July 2008 to January 2013, responsible for technical and programme leadership of all engine and powertrain projects, plus the strategy and organization of the engineering group.
Since January 2013, Andy has been Managing Director of Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains, overseeing development of the PU106A V6 Hybrid Power Unit, which went on to successfully power the 2014 championship winning F1 W05 Hybrid and was also awarded the Dewar Trophy.
Under Andy’s leadership, Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains has powered the Silver Arrows to eight world titles in four years, winning both the Drivers’ and Constructors’ championships in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.
The Mercedes-AMG F1 M08 EQ Power+, the hybrid power unit of the 2017 season, played a pivotal role in the team’s historic success of defending the titles across a major regulation change. The same power unit achieved a conversion efficiency of more than 50% during dyno testing in Brixworth, making it the most efficient racing engine ever made.
Andy was awarded the IMechE James Clayton Award in 2013 for his outstanding contributions to engine design and development in Formula One – including the V10, V8 and incumbent V6 with Hybrid Energy Recovery System – while also being recognized for his leadership at Brixworth.
2013 Managing Director, Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains
2008 Engineering and Programme Director, Mercedes-Benz HPE
2006 Chief Engineer, Engines, Mercedes-Benz HPE
2005 Chief Engineer, V8 Engine Project, Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines
2004 Principal Engineer, V10 Engine, Mercedes-Ilmor
2000 Principal Engineer, F1 Design and Development, Cosworth Racing
1999 Head of Pre-Development, Formula One, BMW Motorsport
1997 Principal Engineer, F1 Design and Development, Cosworth Racing
1994 Senior Engineer, F1 Design and Development, Cosworth Racing
1992 Project Engineer, F1 Design and Development, Cosworth Racing
1991 Graduate Engineer, Cosworth Racing