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You also might be interested: ford, ford transit, van, customization, toyota, toyota yaris, rally car, ford fiesta, hatchback, hyundai, hyundai i20, citroen, citroen c3, paris motor show, concept

Limited-edition Ford Transit gets the WRC treatment

Van-Sport, the creator of Ford custom vehicles, has just added a Rally edition for the famous Ford Transit Custom MS-RT commercial vans. The R-spec edition, which will be limited to only 50 units and provides as much as 208hp, is especially made for the 2nd year anniversary between Van-Sport and its British partner Malcom Wilson of M-Sport motorsport company.

Seen recently at the 2017 Rallyday event in Castle Combe racing circuit, the Ford Transit arrives with a handful of new upgrades over the standard Transit Custom MS-RT. One of which is the brake kit that the company has been talking about in the past several months. The custom specialist has also added some special options including the 208hp power increase and an uprated rear suspension. As standard, the Transit Custom packs only a total of 170 horsepower.

Since the R-Spec is an upgraded version of the Custom MS-RT, the van is already equipped with an 18-inch OZ Racing alloy wheels and a bespoke bodykit. Similarly, the double cab in van is offered as a five-seater configuration and features dual sliding side doors and rear tailgate. Due to the MS-RT upgrade, the vehicle received additional goodies such as power convertor, a LED powered load space lighting plus a satellite navigation system with reversing camera.

Read the entire article Limited-edition Ford Transit gets the WRC treatment

Toyota bags first World Rally Championship victory since 1999

Yes, Toyota hasn’t joined the WRC since the first generation of iPod was released. For the first time in many years, Toyota comes back and has won its first race in this year’s World Rally Championship. Jari-Matti Latvala of Finland took the lead in the driver’s championship at the Rally Sweden against Ott Tanak and Sebastien Ogier on weekend.

Latvala takes the lead in the championship score boards after finishing with the fastest time on 6 stages. Driving behind the wheels of his Toyota Yaris, Latvala only had a 3.8 second advantage over Tanak who was behind the wheels of the Ford Fiesta WRC. Ogier also went with his new Fiesta and had placed third in the final ranking.

Shortly after the race, an obviously thrilled Latvala was left with no words to express his excitement. Nevertheless, he thanked the whole team and said that he’s looking forward to going to Mexico. At the same time, the WRC driver also felt sorry for Hyundai’s Thierry Neuville and said that he had been in the same situation before.

Read the entire article Toyota bags first World Rally Championship victory since 1999

M-Sport’s completely overhauled 2017 Ford Fiesta WRC makes its debut

M-Sport has taken the veil off its challenger for the next season of the World Rally Championship – the 2017 Ford Fiesta WRC -- and it has very little in common with the outgoing model. In particular, the 2017 Ford Fiesta WRC is beefier, more aerodynamic and more powerful than the 2016 Ford Fiesta RS WRC. Designed to tackle different types of roads in various weather conditions, 2017 Ford Fiesta WRC is out to prove that it counts as among the best in the rallying world.

Essentially, this rallying car is based on the street-going 2017 Ford Fiesta, which is by itself already an excellent performance on the road as well as off it. In addition, the 2017 Ford Fiesta comes with a style that would allow onlookers to immediately sense that this is not just any car – an attribute that enabled it to become one of the best-selling small cars in Europe.

Through the years, rallying versions of the Ford Fiesta have been racking up victories during events around the globe. In 2016 alone, the Ford Fiesta R5 scored 159 wins and numerous class wins. Moreover, the 2016 Ford Fiesta R5 won its second straight FIA European Rally Championship. The new 2017 Ford Fiesta WRC aims to continue the winning ways of the 2016 Ford Fiesta R5 while complying with WRC technical regulations, which have been revised drastically for the 2017 season. To that effect, Ford moved to completely overhaul its WRC campaigner – with around 95 percent of the 2017 Ford Fiesta WRC being developed and designed from scratch in order for the rallying car to deliver more power, more mechanical grip and more dynamic performance.

Read the entire article M-Sport’s completely overhauled 2017 Ford Fiesta WRC makes its debut

Hyundai launches i20 WRC for 2017

After we’ve seen the disguised prototypes several weeks ago, Hyundai at last took the wraps off its new i20 WRC at Italy’s Autodromo Nazionale Monza racing circuit. Hyundai was the first to show off what they have prepared for the approaching World Rally Championship season.

Following WRC’s newly updated regulations, you wouldn’t be expecting the same engine power, handling and aerodynamics like you’ve seen them before. Because of this, nothing could be more exciting than to witness Hyundai’s new i20 Coupe compete in the race.

Michel Nandan, Hyundai Team Principal, considers the new regulations as the most significant change for a while. He thinks that the new technical requirements are a chance for them to apply whatever they had experienced and learned in the past seasons. Furthermore, all teams would be on the same footing since each one of them will practically start from scratch. Thus, it’s probably the most “entertaining” season that we can all look forward to this 2017.

Read the entire article Hyundai launches i20 WRC for 2017

The much-awaited car event this season will showcase Citroen Racing’s C3 WRC Concept. We have to say; we’re also just as excited to see it compete in the upcoming Monte-Carlo Rally next year. Citroen’s return to the FIA World Rally Championship definitely opens new challenges both for the French car manufacturer and the racing team.

Citroen has already won three world championship titles in the previous years. The brand is also set to take home its 3rd manufacturer’s title with its very own C-Elysée. Currently, Citroen has 96 record wins and 8 manufacturer’s titles under its belt. This only proves how Citroen is bent on winning another major title with the new C3 model. Good thing, the racing team is already preparing for the FIA WRC and is more daring than ever.

Although Citroen is bringing the new C3 in this year’s motor show in Paris, we just found out they have yet to finalise other details for the racecar version. Still, the world will see it up close for the first time and that would be enough to give everyone an impression of what to expect after the final touches.

Read the entire article Citroen introduces 2017 C3 WRC with highly promising concept

Citroën Racing is continuing to develop their 2017 World Rally Car in Portugal, less than a month after the race. Kris Meeke and Stéphane Lefebvre achieved considerable mileage during the four-day test despite challenging weather variations and conditions.

The initial test was completed in southern France. Almost immediately after, Citroën Racing took their 2017 World Rally Car to the Algarve in Portugal for a second set of development test runs. The car is a prototype assembled by the Versailles Technical Centre. The testing team of Kris Meeke, Paul Nagle, Stéphane Lefebvre and Gabin Moreau had their hands full negotiating the car through fog, rain and hail as well as sunny weather, in preparation for the Rally de Portugal where they will be part of the Abu Dhabi World Rally Team.

Laurent Fregosi, Technical Director of Citroën Racing said that they were very thankful to put the car through such a variety of weather conditions to thoroughly evaluate the possible set-ups and how the body withstood accumulations of mud. The test objectives included assessing how the car’s components reliability held up. Mileage for each part is recorded and verified with the specifications. Additionally, Fregosi adds that they “also focused on looking for performance and driver comfort.”

Read the entire article Citroën Racing gets ready for 2017 World Rally Car challenge in Portugal

Festivities for the 2016 FIA WRC, World Rally Championship, began for Hyundai Motorsport with the unveiling of its latest model, the New Generation i20 WRC. The event was witnessed by 200 guests and media personalities who had gathered in Alzenau, Germany, at the team’s factory.

The presentation took place at Hyundai Motorsport’s racing headquarters. It is here that the future model R5 rally car is going to be produced. This unit is also inspired by the New Generation i20. Hyundai Motorsport has seen two successful seasons in the highly competitive environment of WRC.

During this short period, the Hyundai team has successfully climbed up the steep learning curve and is now an established competitor for its rivals. The official release of the New Generation five-door i20 WRC opens doors for yet another exciting journey in the history of Hyundai Motorsport in WRC.

Read the entire article Hyundai unveils New Generation i20 WRC in Germany

Volkswagen had a great opening at the 2014 season of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC)! Riding a Polo R WRC, Sebastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia made an excellent performance at the Monte Carlo Rally, the first race of the 2014 WRC season. This will be their 2nd win at Monte, 17th victory in the WRC and 10th with Volkswagen.

Ogier had to stave off hard-fighting Bryan Bouffier (Ford) and Kris Meeke (Citroen) to take the Monte win. Bouffier and Meeke ended up at second and third, respectively.

All Volkswagen Polo R WRCs managed to make it to the top 10, racking up points for themselves: Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (fifth) and Andreas Mikkelsen/Mikko Markkula (seventh). All racers at the Monte had to brave extremely difficult weather and road conditions -- rain in the valleys, snow at altitude – making tire selection as the decisive factor.

Read the entire article Sebastien Ogier wins 2014 Monte Carlo Rally in VW Polo R WRC

The Volkswagen Polo R WRC is all set and ready to take on the challenges at the 2014 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC). Since its debut a year ago, the Polo R WRC has been undergoing continuous development and is now boasting a 315-hp power. It now bears a new design -- grey and blue stripes – providing a very dynamic first impression.

The four wheel-drive Polo R WRC has won 10 of the 13 rallies last season, ensuring all three World Championship titles for Volkswagen. The 2014 Polo R WRC is not only enhanced on the outside, but also on the inside – making it much better than the 2013 version. After the 2013 season, the team from Wolfsburg played ten so-called jokers, which allowed it to alter individual parts.

Besides optimizing chassis components and new set-up variants for the drive train, VW’s engineers were tasked to enhance the stability of the race car. Volkswagen used one joker to fit a new software version for the on-board electronics.

Read the entire article Vw Polo R WRC is prepared to tackle 2014 FIA WRC

Hyundai officially unveiled its full team line-up at a special launch event that took place in Frankfurt today. For those who don’t know, the Korean carmaker is preparing for its debut in the 2014 FIA World Rally Championship at Monte Carlo next month. The car you see in the photos is actually the final version of the i20 WRC.

Thierry Neuville made his first public appearance in Hyundai Motorsport colours as the teams lead driver, while Juho Hänninen, who will drive the second i20 WRC at selected events, was also present. It was also announced that both Dani Sordo and Chris Atkinson will partner Thierry Neuville at several events during the season, with Dani Sordo running on Rallye Monte-Carlo and Atkinson confirmed for Rally Australia.

Using the occasion of its WRC launch, Hyundai also announced that it will use “N” lettering to symbolize its high performance technology on both the i20 WRC car and future mass-produced high performance cars.

Read the entire article Hyundai unveils the 2014 i20 WRC, announces N performance sub-brand

Hyundai Motorsport continued to test its i20 WRC car through the month of August. The 2014-spec i20 WRC car made its debut on the tarmac in France. And in Finland, it was subjected to a productive test on high-speed gravel conditions. For ten days, test drivers Bryan Bouffier and Juho Hänninen shared duties on tarmac before gravel specialist Hänninen took over in his home turf.

From August 12 to 16, Hyundai gathered data on the terrain in the Vosges region of France and had the latest iteration of the i20 WRC car driven on tarmac roads for the first time. Team Principal Michel Nandan said that they purposely used a broad test plan to define the base set-up for that surface. He said that they encountered no major issues and that they “completed good mileage.”

He pointed out that Bouffier and Hänninen gave them some valuable feedback, allowing them to focus on fine-tuning the individual components. He explained that it was “very positive tarmac debut.” Bouffier said that because of the intensive tests, the team got a “very good base” that they can develop further.

Read the entire article Hyundai continued development of the 2014-spec i20 WRC in France, Finland

Hyundai Motorsport recently conducted an on-the-road testing of the newest Hyundai i20 WRC, fresh from its workshop at its Alzenau headquarters. After months of preparation, the latest Hyundai i20 WRC went into its first shakedown on a private testing ground in mid-May 2013. Hyundai Motorsport’s technical team completed the shakedown without any particular issue.

The test drive was done to check the i20 WRC’s systems as the team begins a tight test schedule to prepare for the FIA World Rally Championship in 2014. After the shakedown, Hyundai Motorsport then subjected the i20 WRC to its first comprehensive testing session, in which the team began working on different set-up solutions and obtained valuable data to be analyzed by Hyundai Motorsport’s engineers at its Alzenau base.

During the testing session, the team evaluated all key areas of the i20 WRC’s performance, but paid more attention to collecting feedback on the car’s 1.6-liter turbocharged engine as part of the ongoing development program for the powertrain. The car covered a total of 550 kilometers over the three days of testing, allowing the team to build the knowledge base of testing data from which to prepare its entry to the 2014 WRC.

Read the entire article Hyundai held shakedown of i20 WRC to prepare for 2014 event

Volkswagen driver Sébastien Ogier and co-driver Julien Ingrassia (F/F) secured victory at the fourth round of the 2013 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) season in Portugal. The duo finished the WRC Rally Portugal ahead of Mikko Hirvonen of Citroën as well as Volkswagen teammates Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN). 

The team’s Polo R WRC first timers -- Andreas Mikkelsen and Mikko Markkula (N/FIN) – also managed to secure a sweet spot by placing sixth overall. Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, member of the Board of Management for the Volkswagen brand, supervised the team during the racing event. Dr. Hackenberg, who is responsible for technical development, remarked that it was “great to be present at such a magnificent success.”

He added that he was very impressed by the manner in which the team earned success at the WRC Rally Portugal. He noted that it was “fantastic to see how well” the entire team is working together, providing support for their drivers.

Read the entire article Volkswagen extends WRC lead with win at 2013 Rally Portugal

Volkswagen has unveiled the production version of the Polo R WRC – the fastest-ever Polo with a 151mph, 217bhp record. Its assembly is tied in with the entry of Volkswagen into the 2013 World Rally Championship. The Polo R WRC has its official unveiling at the launch of the rally team in Monte Carlo.

Last May, the Polo WRC Street concept had previewed the Volkswagen Polo R WRC at the VW Group-organised GTI Treffen event in Worthersee, Austria.

There were nearly no changes done to the production, which is still the same high-performance, front-wheel drive hatch as the concept. The turbocharged 2.0 TSI four-pot petrol engine used by the Golf GTI is used for the fifth-generation Polo platform. The powerplant used in the hottest-ever Volkswagen Polo delivers 217bhp at 4500-6300rpm and 258lb ft of torque between 2500-4400rpm.

Read the entire article Volkswagen unveils the production version of the Polo R WRC

Citroën Racing is introducing one of its newest models, the DS3 RRC, which is closely derived from the double World Rally Championship-winning car, DS3 WRC. The DS3 RRC is developed and designed to suit private drivers and could be used in a wide range of competitions like the WRC- 2 (formerly S-WRC), European Rally Championship (ERC), Middle East Rally Championship (MERC).

Starting in 2011, the new FIA World Rally Cars regulations allow carmakers to produce a Regional Rally Car (RRC) version of their models, which are intended for use in championships below the level of the WRC. The World Rally Championship-winning car in 2011 and 2012, the Citroën DS3 WRC now has its own RRC variant. The two racing models are virtually different since the regulations are more restrictive when it comes to aerodynamic features on the RRC.

For instance, the bumper intakes are smaller and the rear spoiler complies with the S2000 standards. The 1.6-litre turbocharged direct-injection engine for the RRC version was slightly modified, with a specific engine flywheel and a 30mm booster flange, compared with 33mm on the WRC. This only limits the RRC to a maximum power output of up to 275bhp.

Read the entire article Citroën Racing unveils Regional Rally Car version of DS3 WRC

As Hyundai prepares to go back to the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC), it has aptly presented a rally-ready version based on the New i20 at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. The WRC is considered as one of the most challenging motorsport series in the world. The vehicle was built to conquer the intense terrains and weather conditions that the participants face.

After Hyundai withdrew from motorsport in 2003, it established a long-term goal to form an in-house WRC team in Europe and come up with a performance rally car. This is now the WRC i20 that debuted in Paris. According to Mark Hall, Marketing Director at Hyundai Motor Europe, the World Rally Championship is regarded as “one of the most dramatic sporting series on Earth.”

He said that this event perfectly embodies the brand due to its “excitement and dynamism.” In addition, an automaker is faced with the most technologically-diverse test at the WRC. He said that Hyundai will be able to demonstrate its engineering excellence and durability and this will aid in the improvement of its future vehicles.

Read the entire article Hyundai i20 ready to make its debut in the WRC

At the ninth round of the WRC, expect to witness the debut of the Yaris R1A racer production model from Toyota’s new TMG performance division. In rally racing terms, the Yaris is a “Zero Car,” which means that it functions like a “pace car” in track racking. But after it debuts, Toyota will offer Yaris rally cars for sale to private teams that want to compete in the new R1A entry level series to the WRC.

This is equivalent to the B-Spec series in SCCA. This vehicle’s price tag says €22,500 (around $27,500). This means that it’s a budget offering for the class that only permits vehicles with engines 1.4-liters or smaller and minimal revisions. The kit for the Yaris features upgrades such as a racing exhaust system with a racing catalytic converter.

It also includes a shorter final drive gear ratios and a racing suspension with adjustable springs. Its safety features include a bolt-in roll cage, sump guard, and guards for the fuel tank and lines. It has fire extinguishers, rally seats, harnesses and power cut-off switch – which are all mandatory for racing. It is powered by a 1.3-liter engine and some heavy-duty rally parts so it’s not likely to be beating the Yaris Spec-B track racing car that’s currently available.

Read the entire article Toyota marks its WRC return with the Yaris R1A

No surprises were pulled during the third and last day of Rally Sweden with the overall standings. The frontrunners kept their leads. The second spot on the podium went to Mikko Hirvonen and Jarmo Lehtinen who ended their second rally with the Citroën Total World Rally Team. Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena didn’t lose their lead in the Drivers' World Championship.

They were awarded points for sixth place, they also earned the best time in the Power Stage. In addition, Citroën took hold of the first position in the Manufacturers’ World Championship.

Day three of Rally Sweden was much shorter than the first two days. It took place on stages that are close to the service park: Lesjöfors, Rämmen and Hagfors -- a stage that was formerly used in 2010 and that had also been where the Power Stage was held at the end of the rally.

Read the entire article Hirvonen achieved its first podium finish for Citroën Total World Rally Team

After Carlos del Barrio and Dani Sordo finished second on the popular Monte Carlo Rally, MINI is now set for a long-term brand presence in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC). On February 2, the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) accepted a two-vehicle manufacturer entry by WRC Team MINI Portugal into the 2012 FIA World Rally Championship for Manufacturers.

Consequently, MINI will fulfill the homologation for the MINI John Cooper Works WRC. Manning the WRC Team MINI Portugal are Armindo Araújo with co-driver Miguel Ramalho and Paulo Nobre with co-driver Edu Paula.

The team will compete in 2012 FIA World Rally Championship's remaining 12 events. This long-term homologation makes sure that the MINI John Cooper Works WRC can be utilized in the premier league of rallying as well as in other series in accordance with FIA regulations until 2018.

Read the entire article MINI aims for long-term brand presence in FIA World Rally Championship

The 2012 season for the ŠKODA Motorsport team kicks off at the Jänner Rally in Austria on the first weekend of January. Both of ŠKODA Motorsport’s factory crews are prepared to start racing after having the most successful season ever. ŠKODA Motorsport will mainly concentrate on three series. Of course, the priority is to win again at the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) after being its champion in 2011.

The team will also be participating in selected events of the European and Czech championships. The opening event of the new season is at the Austrian town of Freistadt, marking the first time that this team joins this part of the European Championship. Aside from being a part of the Austrian Championship, the Jänner Rally would again enter the Czech Championship after being absent for three years.

Juho Hänninen, the current SWRC World Champion, believes that Jänner and the entire European Championship would be a “completely new experience.” He even wished for a more interesting time with snow on the road. The new season will start with IRC Vice-Champion Jan Kopecký getting a new co-driver. He added that he and Pavel Dresler are “looking forward” to their first year together.

Read the entire article Skoda to start the 2012 WRC season at the Jänner Rally