Williams technical director Sam Michael believes the team owes its new-found consistency to the fresh start offered by the 2009 Formula 1 technical regulations.
In 2008, the team's performances were erratic, with top six qualifying pace on street tracks and lower midfield starting positions at higher-speed tracks. But so far this season the team has only failed to make the Q3 top 10 shoot-out once, and that was in mixed weather conditions at last weekend's German Grand Prix.
"Because of the change in the rules, the cars are very different to before and have very different front wings and diffusers," said Michael when asked by AUTOSPORT why the Williams FW31 is such a consistent performer.
"We never really got the FW31 developed under the old regulations to the same level as everybody else. So we always suffered in high-speed corners as that's the first place where you suffer if you don't have enough downforce. Then, because we turned off the development so early, it made it look even worse."
Driver Kazuki Nakajima said that the difference between last year's car and the FW31 is significant, especially when it comes to consistency.
"The car has been very consistent and that comes from its characteristics," he told AUTOSPORT. "It's very good to see that the team is capable of producing such a good car.
"Last, it was like driving a different car at different tracks. At some, we picked up grip with the tyres and at some we didn't. This year, the performance is always there and the feeling is consistent. It never changes track by track which makes it much easier for the driver."
Despite its consistent showings, Michael still believes that the team is at its best on street circuits and is looking forward to the three remaining temporary tracks.
"There is some trend," said Michael. "We don't have the same sorts of troughs that we used to have, but at Monaco and Melbourne we were more competitive so we've still got a spike on street circuits.
"We've got Valencia, Singapore and Abu Dhabi still to come and we'll see how it plays at those.
"The fast tracks are much better than in previous years, but it's close. You can definitely see McLaren getting their act together, so that's going to make it more difficult."
Williams lies fifth in the constructors' championship following Nico Rosberg's fourth place in the German Grand Prix.