Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC development
- 4th December 2016, 9:44pm
Behind the spectacular array of aerodynamical additions to the car, the main story about the 2017 Hyundai i20 Coupe World Rally Car is that it is based on the two-door Coupe body. Martin Holmes reports.
This is the model which had been planned for the 2016 WRC model, but which at short notice had to be changed to a new four door model instead.
The engine is a global design based on the concept of the 2016 engine. Some components are the same, for example the crankshaft and the connecting rods, but much of the work on the engine has been in general packaging, while there had also been work on the cylinder head. The bore and stroke are the same as before with the 2016 NG i20 WRC.
There was no particular order of development priority. While other work proceeded, the last priority was the bodywork because the regulations came late. The regulations regarding aero work was only fully fixed in July, and there was reluctance to do work which might have to be changed.
Aero work started behind rival teams, but at least the work was only done once!
So far the team has carried out 6,000km of testing, mainly on gravel. The first test was mainly for functionality test and durability. Then tests on handling on gravel.
Hyundai Motorsport Team Principal Michel Nandan explained: “I would say around 4,000km on gravel on a variety of different types of surface such as in Spain and Portugal.
“Then a week on tarmac with three days in September in Germany. We have not done so much on tarmac, but now all the tests we are doing is to prepare for Monte Carlo. There will be one test session of just four days before Christmas, and another one in the beginning of January.”
Current plans at the team headquarters at Alzenau is to start building cars. With regards to Monte Carlo the team will start with three cars.
At the moment there is one complete test car, one complete bodyshell and two new bodyshells are being built for Monte. The car seen at the launch was a mock-up.
Team partners are familiar, led by Shell (used for lubricants) and Mobis parts supplier, while suppliers include Magneti Marelli, Brembo and Sabelt.
No 2017 World Rally Cars will be sold.
- Martin Holmes
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