Susie Wolff has become the second woman in recent weeks to join a Formula One team as a development driver.
Early last month Marussia appointed 32-year-old Spaniard Maria de Villota as a test driver, with the prospect of taking part in the young driver test later this year.
Now Wolff, who this season competes in her seventh series of DTM, the German touring car championship, will initially take on a development role with Williams.
The decision had to be approved by the Williams board, of which Wolff’s husband Toto is a member, although he recused himself from the process.
Team principal Frank Williams said of the 29-year-old Scot: “Susie is a talented, successful and highly professional racing driver who competes in one of the world’s most fiercely-contested series.
“Susie will join Williams as a development driver, in which capacity she will assist us with the development of our simulator and other technical challenges.
“She will also undertake some aerodynamic testing of the FW34 and a full track test in the coming months, and will attend a number of races with us.”
Wolff believes her step up could have more wider-ranging benefits as she said: “I hope to demonstrate women can play a role at the highest levels of motorsport.
“I shall be working closely with the team on its social responsibility programme in the areas of education and road safety.”
Hailing Wolff’s arrival into F1, supremo Bernie Ecclestone said: “If Susie is as quick in a car as she looks good out of a car then she will be a massive asset to any team, and on top of that she is very intelligent.
“I am really looking forward to having her in Formula One.”