Andrew Graham "Andy" Priaulx, MBE is a British professional racing driver from Guernsey racing for Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK in the FIA World Endurance Championship, having been a former BMW factory driver. He is a European Touring Car Championship champion, three times World Touring Car Championship champion and the only FIA Touring Car champion to win an international-level championship for four consecutive years; the previous record was Roberto Ravaglia's three successive championships. Born in Guernsey, Priaulx has competed in many types of motorsport, beginning in karting at the minimum age of eight. After a brief flirtation with powerboat racing, he started hillclimbing while still a teenager, sharing a car with his father Graham, it was apparent that he had great natural ability, few people were surprised when he took the British Hillclimb Championship title in 1995. After this, he made the switch to circuit racing, where after a low-key couple of years in Formula Renault UK Championship and British Formula 3 he demonstrated his skills were transferable by switching to the Renault Spider championship in 1998 dominating it in 1999.
His career stalled somewhat when he returned to British Formula 3 in 2000–01. He had some success at this level, but despite finishing sixth in the championship in 2001 was unable to progress further up the single-seater ladder. In 2001 Priaulx had a pair of British Touring Car Championship guest drives for the Egg Vauxhall team, standing in for the suspended Phil Bennett, he stunned the regulars by taking pole position on his debut at Oulton Park, demonstrating that his future appeared to lie in that direction. The following year he was signed by the works Honda BTCC team for their 2002 campaign, he won one race and finished on the podium in two others, the following season was signed by Bart Mampaey's BMW UK team for their European Touring Car Championship effort. He was in contention for the title until late in the year finishing third. Priaulx occasionally guested in Australian V8 Supercar racing, competing at the Bathurst 1000km in 2002 with Yvan Muller in a Kmart Racing Commodore and 2003 with Cameron McLean again in a Kmart Commodore, the Sandown 500 km in 2003.
2004 saw Priaulx win a major circuit racing championship, as he became ETCC champion after a season-long battle with Dirk Müller. Both men obtained the same number of points, but Priaulx had won five races as against Müller's three, this was sufficient to hand the Priaulx the title. Priaulx repeated his 2004 success in 2005, 2006 and 2007, clinching the World Touring Car Championship at the final round in Macau. In 2005, he won the crown with two second-place finishes in the final round when his nearest rivals, Dirk Müller and Fabrizio Giovanardi both failed to score; the following year, a win in the opening race of the final meeting left him needing to finish fifth in the final event to beat Jörg Müller by a single point, which he achieved. Heading into the final meeting of the 2007 WTCC season at Macau, Priaulx was joint leader of the championship alongside former BTCC champion Yvan Muller, he came eighth in the first race and won from pole position in the second race to claim his and BMW's third WTCC championship in a row.
He was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire in the 2008 Birthday Honours. Priaulx again raced in the World Touring Car Championship for BMW Team UK in 2009, finishing fourth in the standings; as well as the WTCC, he competed in selected rounds of the American Le Mans Series for BMW and a number of races in the Australian V8 Supercars championship, driving a Walkinshaw Racing Holden with David Reynolds at the Phillip Island and Bathurst endurance races. In 2010, Priaulx continued to race in the World Touring Car Championship for BMW and competed in several races for BMW in the Le Mans Series, 2010 Armor All Gold Coast 600 in V8 Supercars with Craig Lowndes, Race of Champions, as well as the Le Mans 24 Hours. On 5 December 2010, BMW announced that it would not be continuing its factory effort in the World Touring Car Championship from 2011 onwards, it was announced on 25 January 2011, that Priaulx contest the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup for BMW, as well as undertaking testing duties for BMW with cars from other racing categories.
Priaulx spent the 2012 and 2013 seasons racing for BMW in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters, scoring his best result in the final round of the 2013 season at the Hockenheimring, where he finished in sixth after starting in third. He switched to racing in the United SportsCar Championship in the United States for 2014. In January 2015 it was announced at Autosport International that Priaulx would return to the British Touring Car Championship for 2015 with West Surrey Racing, campaigning a BMW 125i M Sport, combining his BTCC programme with racing works BMWs in the European Le Mans Series and the North American Endurance Cup. On 10 December 2018, it was announced that Priaulx will join Lynk & Co Cyan Racing for the 2019 World Touring Car Cup season, partnering former WTCC champions Yvan Muller, Thed Björk and Yvan's nephew Yann Ehrlacher. On 5 December 2015, it was announced that Priaulx had parted ways with BMW after a 13-year stint with the German manufacturer to join Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK for their upcoming debut in the 2016 FIA World Endurance Championship season.
He was unveiled as a Ford driver on 5 January 2016 alongside teammates Marino Franchitti, Stefan Mücke, Olivier Pla. Priaulx's son Sebastian Priaulx is a racing driver. Although Priaulx is British, he has been mistakenly identified as French, due to his surname (pronounced pree-oh /pr
A manual transmission known as a manual gearbox, a standard transmission or colloquially in some countries as a stick shift, is a type of transmission used in motor vehicle applications. It uses a driver-operated clutch engaged and disengaged by a foot pedal or hand lever, for regulating torque transfer from the engine to the transmission. A conventional 5-speed manual transmission is the standard equipment in a base-model vehicle, while more expensive manual vehicles are equipped with a 6-speed transmission instead; the number of forward gear ratios is expressed for automatic transmissions as well. Manual transmissions feature a driver-operated clutch and a movable gear stick. Most automobile manual transmissions allow the driver to select any forward gear ratio at any time, but some, such as those mounted on motorcycles and some types of racing cars, only allow the driver to select the next-higher or next-lower gear; this type of transmission is sometimes called a sequential manual transmission.
In a manual transmission, the flywheel is attached to the engine's crankshaft and spins along with it. The clutch disc is in between the pressure plate and the flywheel, is held against the flywheel under pressure from the pressure plate; when the engine is running and the clutch is engaged, the flywheel spins the clutch plate and hence the transmission. As the clutch pedal is depressed, the throw out bearing is activated, which causes the pressure plate to stop applying pressure to the clutch disk; this makes the clutch plate stop receiving power from the engine, so that the gear can be shifted without damaging the transmission. When the clutch pedal is released, the throw out bearing is deactivated, the clutch disk is again held against the flywheel, allowing it to start receiving power from the engine. Manual transmissions are characterized by gear ratios that are selectable by locking selected gear pairs to the output shaft inside the transmission. Conversely, most automatic transmissions feature epicyclic gearing controlled by brake bands and/or clutch packs to select gear ratio.
Automatic transmissions that allow the driver to manually select the current gear are called manumatics. A manual-style transmission operated by computer is called an automated transmission rather than an automatic though no distinction between the two terms need be made. Contemporary automobile manual transmissions use four to six forward gear ratios and one reverse gear, although consumer automobile manual transmissions have been built with as few as two and as many as seven gears. Transmissions for heavy trucks and other heavy equipment have 8 to 25 gears so the transmission can offer both a wide range of gears and close gear ratios to keep the engine running in the power band. Operating aforementioned transmissions use the same pattern of shifter movement with a single or multiple switches to engage the next sequence of gear selection. French inventors Louis-Rene Panhard and Emile Levassor are credited with the development of the first modern manual transmission, they demonstrated their three-speed transmission in 1894 and the basic design is still the starting point for most contemporary manual transmissions.
This type of transmission offered multiple gear ratios and, in most cases, reverse. The gears were engaged by sliding them on their shafts, which required careful timing and throttle manipulation when shifting, so the gears would be spinning at the same speed when engaged; these transmissions are called sliding mesh transmissions or sometimes crash boxes, because of the difficulty in changing gears and the loud grinding sound that accompanied. Newer manual transmissions on 4+-wheeled vehicles have all gears mesh at all times and are referred to as constant-mesh transmissions, with "synchro-mesh" being a further refinement of the constant mesh principle. In both types, a particular gear combination can only be engaged when the two parts to engage are at the same speed. To shift to a higher gear, the transmission is put in neutral and the engine allowed to slow down until the transmission parts for the next gear are at a proper speed to engage; the vehicle slows while in neutral and that slows other transmission parts, so the time in neutral depends on the grade and other such factors.
To shift to a lower gear, the transmission is put in neutral and the throttle is used to speed up the engine and thus the relevant transmission parts, to match speeds for engaging the next lower gear. For both upshifts and downshifts, the clutch is released; some drivers use the clutch only for starting from a stop, shifts are done without the clutch. Other drivers will depress the clutch, shift to neutral engage the clutch momentarily to force transmission parts to match the engine speed depress the clutch again to shift to the next gear, a process called double clutching. Double clutching is easier to get smooth, as speeds that are close but not quite matched need to speed up or slow down only transmission parts, whereas with the clutch engaged to the engine, mismatched speeds are fighting the rotational inertia and power of the engine. Though automobile and light truck transmissions are now universally synchronized, transmissions for heavy trucks and machinery, motor
Augusto Farfus Jr. is a Brazilian professional racing driver, BMW Motorsport works driver. He lives in Monaco. Born in Curitiba, Farfus first tasted racing in minibike races and won the local championships in 1991. Like many drivers, his motorsport career began with karting. In 1992, at the age of 9 years, he won the Paraná state championship, competed in São Paulo states championship from 1993 to 1998. In 1999 he succeeded in both winning the Italian Winter Cup and finishing runner-up in the North American Championship, he is married to Elirane Johnsson. In 2000 Farfus moved to Italy and competed in the Formula Renault Italian championship and the Eurocup series for the next two years, winning the Eurocup in 2001. For 2002 he joined Draco Racing in Euro Formula 3000. In 2003 he won the Euro Formula 3000 Championship aged just 20 years old. From 2004 to 2006 Farfus was a factory Alfa Romeo driver in the European Touring Car Championship and the World Touring Car Championship. In the 2006 season Farfus fought for the title against Andy Priaulx and Jörg Müller until the final race in Macau, but his outdated Alfa Romeo 156 wasn't up to the pace, Farfus ended the season in 3rd place.
Before the 2007 season, he switched to the Schnitzer BMW-run squad, BMW Team Germany, alongside the German, 2006 season runner-up, Jörg Müller. He temporarily led the championship during the season, but ended this season in 4th place as Priaulx won, he has continued with the team through the 2008 season and into 2009. He scored six wins in 2009, missing out on the title to SEAT's Gabriele Tarquini at the final meeting In 2010, BMW's participation in the WTCC was limited to a two-car line-up, as Farfus joined Andy Priaulx at the Racing Bart Mampaey team. Farfus scored no wins, however he won race 2 at Okayama on the road, but he and teammate Priaulx were disqualified by running a non-homologated gearbox that did not conform to the technical regulations. On 5 December 2010, BMW announced it was withdrawing from the WTCC, but would continue to supply customer teams with its 320TC car. On 25 January 2011, it was announced that Farfus would contest the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup with BMW, which would include its former WTCC drivers Andy Priaulx, Jörg Müller and Dirk Muller.
On 3 December 2018, it was announced that Farfus will join Hyundai for the 2019 World Touring Car Cup season, partnering the series's inaugural driver's champion, Gabriele Tarquini, Norbert Michelisz and Nicky Catsburg. † Driver was classified as they completed 75 % of the winner's race distance. † Ineligible for championship points. † Farfus did not complete sufficient laps in order to score full points. * Season still in progress. * Season still in progress. * Season still in progress. Augusto Farfus official website Augusto Farfus career summary at DriverDB.com Augusto Farfus Jr. em foco
2013 Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters
The 2013 Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters season was the fourteenth season of the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters, since the series' resumption in 2000. Bruno Spengler started the season as the defending drivers' champion. BMW was the defending manufacturers' champion, BMW Team Schnitzer the defending teams' champion. Mike Rockenfeller clinched his first DTM title at the penultimate round of the season at Zandvoort, driving for Audi; this was the first season since the 2005 season without any female DTM drivers due to Susie Wolff and Rahel Frey left the series after 2012 season. For the first time that all-DTM cars introduced the F1-style Drag Reduction Systems to adjust the rear wing and assist overtaking with rear wing inclination angle to 15°; the minimum weight of the cars has been increased from 1,100 kg to 1,110 kg to better aerodynamic reasons. After competing with six cars in 2012, BMW increased its involvement in the series by expanding to eight cars. Team MTEK ran the new team for the marque.
Mercedes-Benz submitted eight entries to the grid, but scaled back their commitment to six cars after parting company with Persson Motorsport. David Coulthard left DTM after three seasons racing for Mercedes-Benz in order to continue his role as commentator of Formula One races for the BBC. Rahel Frey, who drove for Audi in 2011 and 2012, joined Audi's GT programme. Timo Glock left Formula One to join the DTM series, driving for BMW. Glock joined BMW's fourth team. Jamie Green left Mercedes-Benz after eight seasons with the manufacturer to join Audi. Joey Hand and Andy Priaulx swapped seats, with Hand moving from Team RMG to join Team RBM, with Priaulx going in the opposite direction, moving from Team RBM to Team RMG. Formula 3 Euro Series front-runners Daniel Juncadella and Pascal Wehrlein joined the DTM series, driving for Mücke Motorsport. Having been announced as one of the six Mercedes drivers for the 2013 season, Ralf Schumacher announced his retirement from motor racing on 15 March 2013.
BMW test driver Marco Wittmann was promoted to a race seat for the 2013 season, racing for Team MTEK. Susie Wolff ended her DTM career after seven seasons with Mercedes-Benz to focus on Williams F1 testing duties. A provisional eleven-round calendar was announced on 23 October 2012, the final schedule was published on 21 November 2012. A revised calendar was released by series organisers on 19 December 2012, with the Norisring round moved back by a week to avoid a clash with the German Grand Prix. To accommodate the change of date, the Zandvoort meeting was moved from July to September, would become the penultimate event of the season, with the Oschersleben and second Hockenheim meetings being held than scheduled. Notes The 2013 season saw the DTM series travel to Russia for the first time, with the inclusion of a round at the Moscow Raceway scheduled for August; the non-championship exhibition rounds held at the Munich Olympic Stadium in 2011 and 2012 was discontinued in 2013. The race at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Spain –, included on the DTM calendar in 2011 and 2012 – was discontinued.
Scoring systemPoints are awarded to the top ten classified finishers as follows: † — Driver retired, but was classified as they completed 75% of the winner's race distance. The official website of the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters
BMW in motorsport
Throughout its history, BMW cars and motorcycles have been successful in a range of motorsport activities. Apart from the factory efforts, many privateer teams enter BMW road cars in Touring car racing. BMW entered cars or provided engines in Formula One, Formula Two and sportscar racing. BMW is active in ALMS, the World Touring Car Championship, the Isle of Man TT, the North West 200, the Superbike World Championship and the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters. An outstanding role has been played by the 1,500 cc BMW M10 engine block; the four-cylinder started with modest 75 hp in 1961, became successful in touring cars, developed over 300 hp in 1970s Formula Two, at the ripe age of a quarter century, produced twentyfold its original power in the 1986 turbocharged BMW M12/13/1, producing an outstanding 1400 hp. This engine became wideley regarded as one of the most powerful, if not the most, powerful engine in the history of Formula 1 as well as being the most powerful engine built by BMW; as the base of the BMW S14 engine of the original BMW M3, it collected many more wins.
Other impressive displays of engineering involve the production of the BMW S70/2 engine, implemented in the McLaren F1, which set the world record for "world's fastest production car" on March 31, 1998. As well as achieving a Guinness Book of World Records record for longest continuous Drift BMW enjoyed a dominant period in motorcycle racing prior to the Second World War with notable achievements such as Georg Meier's victory in the Senior Race at the 1939 Isle of Man TT. Post war BMW success revolved around Sidecar racing, the marque becoming the premier machinery on the Snaefell Mountain Course, the smaller Clypse Course and from 1949 until the mid 1970s the Sidecar World Championship. BMW-powered sidecars have won numerous World Championships, notable competitors being Rolf Steinhausen, Klaus Enders and Max Deubel; the pre-war dominance enjoyed in motorcycle road racing faded post-war, the main road racing campaign centered on Production Bike Racing with Helmut Dähne campaigning the marque with BMW's best post-war finish until the second decade of the 21st Century being a 3rd-placed position in the 1974 Production 1000cc TT.
BMW resumed road racing in 2009, entering the World Superbike Championship with its BMW S1000RR. This resumption saw its official re-introduction at the Isle of Man the 2014 Isle of Man TT seeing Michael Dunlop campaigning BMW machinery in the Superbike and Senior TTs. Dunlop took victory in the three main solo races, securing BMW's first win in the Senior TT since that of Georg Meier in 1939. Dunlop again took victory in the 2016 Superbike TT during the process of which he set a new outright lap record for the Snaefell Mountain Course at 130.306 mph. BMW have won 25 Isle of an additional 8 victories in the solo classes. In total BMW have recorded 72 rostrum places at the Isle of Man TT, having notched up a total of 382 finishes. BMW motorcycles have won the Dakar Rally six times. In 1981, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1999, 2000. In 2009, BMW returned to the Superbike World Championship with their all new superbike, the BMW S1000RR. In the 1930s, BMW pilots were successful with the BMW 328 two-litre sports car, winning many races including the prestigious Mille Miglia – a class win in 1938 and an outright win in 1940 with Huschke von Hanstein.
A Frazer Nash BMW 328 driven by A. F. P. Fane and came in fifth overall in the 1939 24 Hours of Le Mans. In fact, the BMW 328 proved unbeatable in international sports car races in the two-liter class. Since the pre-war BMW 328 model, BMW had a reputation for sporty production cars; the expensive V8-powered BMW 503 and BMW 507 of the 1950s could not add much to this reputation, unlike the small motorcycle-engine powered BMW 700 which e.g. was driven by Hans Stuck to German championships in hillclimbing. Since the 1962 introduction of the BMW New Class in 1961, BMW has become one of the most successful marques in touring car racing; the original 1500 cc 4-cylinder BMW M10 engine block was modified to a four-valve design which won championships in Formula 2. Equipped with a turbocharger, the version BMW M12/13 won the 1983 Formula One championship. In the 1970s, BMW M GmbH was formed to support the racing efforts; this led to the development of the BMW M1 and in the 1980s to the BMW M3. Having won more road races than any other model in history, the E30 M3 is the world's most successful road race car.
Its success was emulated during the Supertouring era in the 1990s, when the 318i and 320i won several touring car national championships, including the BTCC, French Supertouring Championship, Super Tourenwagen Cup, Italian Superturismo and Australian Super Touring Championship. British Touring Car Championship: BMW won the drivers' championship in 1988, 1991, 1992 and 1993 and manufacturers' championship in 1991 and 1993; the DRM was won by Harald Ertl in a BMW 320i Turbo in 1978. In the DTM, the following BMW drivers have won the DTM drivers' championship: 1987: Eric van der Poele, BMW M3 1989: Roberto Ravaglia, BMW M3 2012: Bruno Spengler, BMW M3 DTM 2014 and 2016 Marco Wittmann, BMW M4 DTMEuropean Touring Car Championship: Since 1968, BMW won 24 drivers' championships along with several manufacturers' and teams' titles. Japanese Touring Car Championship: BMW flew from Europe to Japan to compete in the JTCC and won the championship in 1995. SCCA Pro Racing World Challenge Touring Car Series: BMW won the manufacturer's championship in 2001 and Bill Auberlen, driving a Turner Motorsport BMW 325i, wo
Mattias Ekström is a racing driver from Sweden. He has been competing in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters for Audi since 2001, he is a FIA World Rallycross Champion, a two-time DTM champion and a three-time winner of the Race of Champions. Ekström debuted in karting in 1993; the next years he competed at the Renault 5 Turbo Cup, winning the championship in 1996. The driver progressed to the Swedish Touring Car Championship in 1997, finishing runner-up with a Volvo 850. In 1998 he drove a Ford Mondeo. Ekström won the 1999 championship driving an Audi A4 quattro, he switched rides again in 2000, finishing third with a factory Volvo S40. In 2001, Ekström joined the Abt Junior team to comepte at the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters. Driving Audi TT, he finished 8th in his debut season, third in 2002, fourth in 2003. In 2004, Ekström won the 2004 Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters, defeating Mercedes rivals Gary Paffett and Christijan Albers. In the 2005 DTM season he finished second behind Paffett. Ekström has been active in rallying and the World Rally Championship.
He debuted in the WRC in 1999 and recorded his best result at the 2005 Swedish Rally, finishing tenth in a Škoda factory team Fabia WRC. At the 2005 Race of Champions, Ekström won the Nations' Cup with Tom Kristensen. In 2006, he won the Henri Toivonen Memorial Trophy and earned the title Champion of Champions at the 2006 Race of Champions, by winning over Sébastien Loeb in the individual event finals. After a poor 2006 season, Ekström won his second DTM title in 2007 and went on to win the 2007 Race of Champions, beating Michael Schumacher in the individual finals. In 2009, he won the Race of Champions once more beating the seven-time world champion in the final. Ekström became the first Scandinavian driver to take part in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in June 2010, he raced for Team Red Bull at Infineon Raceway, substituting for Brian Vickers in the No. 83 Toyota Camry, as Vickers was inactive for the remainder of the 2010 season due to blood clots. Ekström was able to finish 21st and lead 7 laps remaining in the top 5 or top 10 the whole day.
However he did so ex-aequo with another Scandinavian driver as Jan Magnussen from Denmark took part in the same race finishing ahead of Ekström. Ekström ran the Air Guard 400 at Richmond International Raceway where he started 42nd and finished 31st. Ekström followed in the footsteps of his father Bengt by branching out into rallycross in 2013, competing in the Swedish round of the European Rallycross Championship in Höljes, finishing second in a Volkswagen Polo, he subsequently announced that he was establishing his own EKS RX team to compete in the FIA World Rallycross Championship. The team made their debut at the Norwegian round of the 2014 World Rallycross Championship season in Hell, fielding a pair of Audi S1s for Ekström and 2013 Junior World Rally Champion Pontus Tidemand. Ekström is regarded as one of the most versatile drivers in the world, he participated in the Bathurst 1000 in 2013 alongside Andy Priaulx in a'wildcard' entry. The entry qualified 19th and finished 10th, with former 1000 winner turned commentator Mark Skaife hailing his efforts, stating that he was "one of the best debutants I have seen", as well as being "the best international driver since Jacky Ickx".
Ickx won the race on debut with Allan Moffat in 1977. In January 2018, Ekström announced that he would be retiring from DTM, to concentrate on running his rallycross team, now with added support from Audi Sport. 1 Shanghai was a non-championship round.† Retired, but was classified as he completed 75% of the winner's race distance.‡ As Ekström was a guest driver, he was ineligible for championship points. Official website Mattias Ekström career summary at DriverDB.com
Sweden the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Scandinavian Nordic country in Northern Europe. It borders Norway to the west and north and Finland to the east, is connected to Denmark in the southwest by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund, a strait at the Swedish-Danish border. At 450,295 square kilometres, Sweden is the largest country in Northern Europe, the third-largest country in the European Union and the fifth largest country in Europe by area. Sweden has a total population of 10.2 million. It has a low population density of 22 inhabitants per square kilometre; the highest concentration is in the southern half of the country. Germanic peoples have inhabited Sweden since prehistoric times, emerging into history as the Geats and Swedes and constituting the sea peoples known as the Norsemen. Southern Sweden is predominantly agricultural, while the north is forested. Sweden is part of the geographical area of Fennoscandia; the climate is in general mild for its northerly latitude due to significant maritime influence, that in spite of this still retains warm continental summers.
Today, the sovereign state of Sweden is a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy, with a monarch as head of state, like its neighbour Norway. The capital city is Stockholm, the most populous city in the country. Legislative power is vested in the 349-member unicameral Riksdag. Executive power is exercised by the government chaired by the prime minister. Sweden is a unitary state divided into 21 counties and 290 municipalities. An independent Swedish state emerged during the early 12th century. After the Black Death in the middle of the 14th century killed about a third of the Scandinavian population, the Hanseatic League threatened Scandinavia's culture and languages; this led to the forming of the Scandinavian Kalmar Union in 1397, which Sweden left in 1523. When Sweden became involved in the Thirty Years War on the Reformist side, an expansion of its territories began and the Swedish Empire was formed; this became one of the great powers of Europe until the early 18th century. Swedish territories outside the Scandinavian Peninsula were lost during the 18th and 19th centuries, ending with the annexation of present-day Finland by Russia in 1809.
The last war in which Sweden was directly involved was in 1814, when Norway was militarily forced into personal union. Since Sweden has been at peace, maintaining an official policy of neutrality in foreign affairs; the union with Norway was peacefully dissolved in 1905. Sweden was formally neutral through both world wars and the Cold War, albeit Sweden has since 2009 moved towards cooperation with NATO. After the end of the Cold War, Sweden joined the European Union on 1 January 1995, but declined NATO membership, as well as Eurozone membership following a referendum, it is a member of the United Nations, the Nordic Council, the Council of Europe, the World Trade Organization and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Sweden maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens, it has the world's eleventh-highest per capita income and ranks in numerous metrics of national performance, including quality of life, education, protection of civil liberties, economic competitiveness, equality and human development.
The name Sweden was loaned from Dutch in the 17th century to refer to Sweden as an emerging great power. Before Sweden's imperial expansion, Early Modern English used Swedeland. Sweden is derived through back-formation from Old English Swēoþēod, which meant "people of the Swedes"; this word is derived from Sweon/Sweonas. The Swedish name Sverige means "realm of the Swedes", excluding the Geats in Götaland. Variations of the name Sweden are used in most languages, with the exception of Danish and Norwegian using Sverige, Faroese Svøríki, Icelandic Svíþjóð, the more notable exception of some Finnic languages where Ruotsi and Rootsi are used, names considered as referring to the people from the coastal areas of Roslagen, who were known as the Rus', through them etymologically related to the English name for Russia; the etymology of Swedes, thus Sweden, is not agreed upon but may derive from Proto-Germanic Swihoniz meaning "one's own", referring to one's own Germanic tribe. Sweden's prehistory begins in the Allerød oscillation, a warm period around 12,000 BC, with Late Palaeolithic reindeer-hunting camps of the Bromme culture at the edge of the ice in what is now the country's southernmost province, Scania.
This period was characterised by small bands of hunter-gatherer-fishers using flint technology. Sweden is first described in a written source in Germania by Tacitus in 98 AD. In Germania 44 and 45 he mentions the Swedes as a powerful tribe with ships that had a prow at each end. Which kings ruled these Suiones is unknown, but Norse mythology presents a long line of legendary and semi-legendary kings going back to the last centuries BC; as for literacy in Sweden itself, the runic script was in use among the south Scandinavian elite by at least the 2nd century AD, but all that has come down to the present from the Roman Period is curt inscriptions on artefacts of male names, demonstrating th