Millbrook Proving Ground in the UK is Europe’s leading location for the development, test and demonstration of every type of land vehicle, with 400 employees based on a 665-acre site offering extensive test facilities including 45 miles of on and off road test tracks.
Modelled on the Milford Proving Ground, in Michigan, USA, the site was constructed in the 1960s by General Motors to provide development support for most European GM vehicles.
The two mile five lane banked high speed track was opened in 1969, construction of many other sections continued into the early 1970s. In the late 1980’s ownership of Millbrook transferred to Group Lotus before the business became independent, in 2016 the business was acquired by venture capitalists for £122 Million.
The company has a wide range of test tracks including a hill route, two city courses and a high speed banked circuit, on which a highest speed of just over 200mph was achieved in a McLaren F1 in 1999.
In 1997 Millbrook took delivery of its first Ascott chamber, this unit is still in service and daily use (a recent Millbrook publicity photograph shows it in use).
The unit in 1997 was the last corrosion chamber the organisation purchased, however such has proved the durability and reliability of the original unit that this year the Millbrook team took delivery of a new CC2600IP.
In full time use from delivery the unit has just concluded several 1000 hour tests on prototype components for a new vehicle.