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There is widespread curiosity among rally fans as to how the spectacle of the 2017 World Rally Cars will distinguish them from the current world championship cars.  

The 2017 VW WRC during recent tests in Germany.Sebastien Ogier has been able to give an insight into what spectators can expect in 2017.  

“For sure on tarmac the car will not look really different in action.  Cars are not sliding at the moment and will not slide next year.  But on gravel it will keep sliding and, despite the extra speed, it will look similar.  

“The big change will be in the sound of the engine, which sounds a lot more aggressive.  That will make the car very exciting.  So I’m sure overall it will be just more spectacular and the car will look more stable.   

“For the driver I am more excited with the extra power we’re going to have next year, which is going to be close to 400, maybe a bit below.  

“The only small change I would prefer for next year would be to have more torque, so more turbo pressure maybe, and maybe not so much horsepower.  

“At the end, what makes rally cars spectacular is to have torque and fast acceleration out of the corner.  We don’t need higher top speed.  That makes it dangerous and not necessarily more spectacular.  

“Of course people like to see the car sliding and for that you need to have torque.  However, we won’t have really more torque next year, it will be more power instead.  But still it is going in the right direction because it will quite probably be more challenging for the drivers.”  

Will it be faster?  

“Yes, I think so.  The 2-litre cars were also very fast, but this car has a little bit more downforce which will help you keep up the speed on fast sections.  

Enough to set faster times? Maybe not everywhere, because we have seen during tests in Germany in the vineyards that when it’s very narrow, the wider car was harder to drive.”
- Martin Holmes

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