Hamilton's paternal grandparents arrived in the UK from Grenada in the 1950s.
Lewis was born on the 7th January 1985 in Stevenage, Hertfordshire.
He was bought up in the Peartree area of Shephall.
His parents, Carmen and Anthony named him Lewis after the US Olympic gold medallist Carl Lewis.
He is 1.74m tall.
Lewis took his first drive in a go-kart while on a childhood holiday in Spain. Shortly after, Anthony found £1000 to buy him his own kart.
His first driving victory came, also at the age of six, with a radio-controlled car in a Blue Peter competition.
When he was ten, he became Britain’s youngest cadet kart champion.
At the Autosport Awards ceremony in London he asked McLaren boss Ron Dennis for his autograph, which the F1 supremo gave him, telling Lewis to “phone me in nine years”.
Three years later he signed up to the McLaren and Mercedes-Benz Young Drivers Programme. He was still at the John Henry Newman Roman Catholic School in Stevenage.
At 13, he became the youngest driver to be contracted to an F1 team.
His favourite music is R & B, Reggae, Hip-Hop, and funky house. His particular favourites are Bob Marley, Sizzla, 50Cent, 2Pac and Beenie Man.
His hobbies include playing the guitar, cycling, squash, listening to music and training.
Hamilton is the first black driver of African or Afro-Caribbean ancestry to compete in F1.
Following Lewis’ debut win at Canada in 2007, McLaren Mercedes broke with tradition and let him keep the crystal trophy. Contractually, the team's drivers are required to hand over the trophies to be displayed at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking.
Lewis was given a diamond-studded helmet by the international diamond company and team sponsor Steinmetz.
He's on target to earn up to £5million this year in salary and race bonuses.
He has bought a flat in Woking to be closer to the McLaren headquarters.
He divides his time between Woking and his family home in Stevenage, where he still lives with his dad, stepmother Linda and half brother Nicholas who has cerebal palsy.
He is still going out with his college sweetheart, Jodia Ma, 21. She lives in her country of birth, Hong Kong.
Sir Jackie Stewart said of Lewis "He is the best prepared first year Formula One driver that I've ever seen."
The Daily Mail quotes Hamilton as saying that reaching pole postion is "better than sex!"