With sales of £9 billion in the UK alone, the motorsport industry is a dynamic, highly competitive industry reliant on the skill and expertise of engineers to optimise all aspects of the design, build and testing of racing cars and bikes.
Accredited by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), this integrated Master’s course responds to the demand for motorsport engineers with strong analytical and problem solving skills to ensure the industry remains at the cutting edge of innovation.
With extensive links to well-known automotive companies like Jaguar Land Rover and Lotus, Coventry University has a long and prestigious automotive, transport and engineering heritage.
Motorsport engineers can work on the design, testing and production of performance vehicles or become part of a racing team responsible for improving performance before, during and after a race.
This course aims to further your analytical skills and knowledge of the fundamental scientific and managerial concepts of engineering required to carry out a comprehensive range of mechanically related tasks, in areas such as stress, temperature, kinematics and dynamics.
In the first year, you will have the opportunity to study subjects that have been designed to broaden your perspective and understanding of the underlying engineering principles to bring you to a level where the detailed work in motorsport can be studied.
You will then have the chance to specialise in performance engineering, covering design for performance, construction and operation of competition vehicles, alongside related aspects of materials science, aerodynamics, structural analysis, vehicle systems. We also aim to provide you with a sound understanding of the commercial context of motorsport engineering, together with the commercial and technical risks associated with innovation. The Formula project provides an all-round experience – from undertaking full cost analysis and producing the business and manufacturing case to designing a vehicle and planning a limited production run. Working to a set of international rules with fixed delivery targets and deadlines, you gain practical experience in planning, executing and reporting on a motorsport project. You will also have the opportunity to improve your digital literacy by submitting CAD models, technical drawings, design posters, as well as a couple of technical reports on their designs.
Throughout your study of this course, you should be able to develop an awareness of the wider responsibilities to society, especially in terms of issues relating to ethics, health, safety and sustainability. We will share the corporate context of engineering, alongside the commercial and technical risks associated with innovation, enabling you to deal with new and unusual challenges in automotive engineering.
You will have the opportunity to participate in individual and group projects in the final year that can be selected according to your personal interests or future aspiration. Group projects have involved JLR, TEREX, Formula Student, Shell Eco Marathon and Horiba MIRA. Recent individual projects have included: an examination of linear motor implementation for rear active steering in our Formula Student vehicle; modelling and simulation of active suspension systems with preview, using Simpack; improving air flow through engine inlet air boxes; and optimisation of an automotive component design and manufacturing cycle using latest generation CAE solutions and 3D printing.
We will encourage you to use imagination and creativity to provide innovative solutions, so that you graduate with a set of skills that will enable you to progress rapidly to positions of responsibility providing technical, managerial and entrepreneurial leadership in specialist or interdisciplinary projects.
Why choose this course?
This professionally accredited degree aims to equip you with the necessary skills and expertise to make a significant early contribution to motorsport engineering and embark on your professional journey to become a Chartered Engineer.
Coventry University is recognised as a renowned centre for motorsport and performance engineering. Our close relationship with the UK performance engineering industry helps to ensure course content reflects current trends and challenges, as well as the latest technologies, design systems and testing processes in this fast-paced, ever-evolving industry.
Our course enjoys high levels of student satisfaction – 100% overall and for the quality of teaching in the National Student Survey (NSS) 2016. We also have an outstanding track record for graduate employability with 100% of graduates employed or continuing their studies within six months (DLHE 2014/15) and 97% of those employed graduates in professional-level jobs.
Teaching is highly practical, focused on providing a thorough understanding of the fundamental principles of motorsport engineering and, more importantly, how this knowledge is applied in the industry. You will have the opportunity to work with staff on real-world problems from industry, commerce and research groups, as you would in professional practice.
We will provide the opportunity for you to apply for professional placements with a wide variety of motorsport and engineering companies, as well as a year abroad (placements subject to availability). You could also take part in exciting projects, such as Shell Eco-marathon or the Institution of Mechanical Engineer’s Formula Student project, which is the biggest student motorsport competition in the world. We have many vehicles and systems available for you to study and test, together with lots of experimental equipment, such as a wind tunnel, four post shaker rig, damper dyno and engine dyno.
You will be taught by academics with wide ranging industrial experience including, for example, automotive and race car deign with AEG, JLR and BMW. Many are actively involved in cutting-edge commercial and academic research in areas such as vehicle dynamics, light weighting, advanced simulation, future concepts and crash protection.
International experience opportunities
The University is committed to providing a global educational experience and this course aims to produce the world’s best motorsport engineers.
We regularly invite international guest lectures; for example, a leading automotive engineering professor at Heilbronn University recently gave our students a presentation on the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) research and the motion platform driving simulator they have built at Heilbronn. We also provide opportunities to participate in a number of field trips, which in the past have included test work at the GM proving ground; a tour of the Ford F150 factory in Detroit, USA; a tour of Hirata, a Japanese Tier 1 automotive supplier for Ford, Chrysler and GM; participation on a certificated training course with Altair on Inspire; and visits to Mahle Powertrain, the University of Michigan and Chrysler Building.
You will be encouraged to undertake a placement year or study year abroad after your second year of study (subject to application and availability). Previously, students have studied at HAN University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands and Esslingen University in Germany. We have also started an online international learning (OIL) project with FACENS University in Brazil linking the Formula student team with their Brazilian counterparts to discuss designs and implementation of the vehicle.
Fully accredited by the IMechE, the course is as such recognised in industry, providing credibility of the technical standard of our graduates among employers, thus improving your career prospects.
Industry-related projects should give you a feel of what the demands and expectations will be in the workplace, as well as enabling you to practice and apply your skills to real motorsport engineering projects. You will also have the opportunity to gain practical, hands-on experience in preparing, running and analysing results from experimental testing and numerical analysis.
Careers options include becoming a race mechanic or race engineer or roles as a manufacturing assistant engineer, composites laminator, design engineer, dimensional management engineer or operations manager in motorsport engineering or related industries.
This degree meets an identified need for graduate level professionals to work in specialist areas such as vehicle/component design, powertrain and chassis development and testing, as well as supervisory and business roles. Our graduates have secured positions with teams such as Red Bull, Williams, Ducati, Triumph, Pilbeam Racing, McLaren and Prodrive.
When you are ready to find permanent employment, you can also receive support from our award-winning Faculty careers service, EEC Futures, which won the ‘Best Placement Service in the UK’ award at the National Undergraduate Employability Awards in 2015 and 2016.
Coventry University is committed to preparing you for your future career and giving you a competitive edge in the graduate job market. The University’s Careers and Employability team provide a wide range of support services to help you plan and prepare for your career.