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Christmas gift reveals secret story of how UK car technology was used to create Olympic torch

Bhattacharyya with Olympic torchOn Wednesday 10th December Coventry company Premier Group are to present a gift of an Olympic torch to Professor Lord Bhattacharyya Chairman of WMG at the University of Warwick revealing the secret story of how leading edge UK car manufacturing technology was used to create the torch.

Automotive companies are constantly looking for new high tech alloys and metals to make vehicles greener by reducing weight while retaining strength. Companies such as Premier Group who supply metal vehicle components need to quickly find new ways of working with shaping, welding and bonding these new materials if they are new to meet their customers evolving needs and in Premier Group’s case in turns to WMG for the manufacturing technology it needs.

When Premier Group received the contract to supply the 2012 Olympic torch it immediately faced a very familiar problem an ambitious design using light weight materials that would aid the runner carrying the torch but challenge the manufacturer creating it. As ever it was WMG who solved this problem, and they did so without charge as WMG’s contribution to a successful Olympics.

Professor Lord Bhattacharyya Chairman of WMG at the University of Warwick said.

“It is well known that WMG develops technology for automotive manufacturers including Jaguar Land Rover and Tata motors but we also offer significant support to small and medium sized companies that supply those manufacturers. We were delighted to supply the technical assistance that helped Premier Group manufacture the torch, and are equally delighted that we can now tell the story of how that torch was also an emblem of the latest UK automotive technology that is helping to deliver increasingly light weight and energy efficient premium vehicles”

Wayne Woolford and Lord Bhattacharyya

Wayne Woolford, Managing Director at Premier Group said “We already had a working relationship with WMG, having collaborated on a number of projects over the past 15 years, looking at the joining of metals. On the Olympic Torch we had a problem with the formability due to the design of the Torch, which we turned to WMG to help us with. Through reversing engineering and the selection of the right materials we were able us to successfully weld the Torch together and deliver on the project.”

The presentation of the torch will take place at 11am on Wednesday 10th December in the International Manufacturing Centre.


For further information please contact:

Peter Dunn, Director of Press and Policy, University of Warwick

Tel UK: 024 76523708 office 07767 655860 mobile, Tel Overseas: +44 (0)24 76523708 office, +44 (0)7767 655860 mobile/cell, Email:


Lisa Barwick, WMG, University of Warwick Tel: 024 76 524721 or 07824 540845


PR351 PJD 9th December 2014




Further information:

Peter Dunn, Director of Press and Policy

Tel UK: 024 76523708 office 07767 655860 mobile

Tel Overseas: +44 (0)24 76523708 office

+44 (0)7767 655860 mobile/cell



Lisa Barwick, WMG

Tel: 024 76 524721 or 07824 540845