VW Polo R WRC test a success
Volkswagen has described its ‘Premier’ test of the Polo R WRC in Germany as a success with enthusiasm shared between the motor sports and senior management of the car giant.
VW has released official pictures and video from the test that saw driving duties shared by two-time World Rally Champion Carlos Sainz and Dr Ulrich Hackenberg, Member of the Volkswagen Board of Management for Technology.
Dakar winner Carlos Sainz (Spain) completed the first test kilometres in the vineyards of Veldenz near Trier, the location that normally plays host to the ADAC Rallye Deutschland, without any problems.
“I immensely enjoy being involved in the development and testing of the new Polo R WRC – and having the privilege of driving the first kilometres is naturally a great honour,” said Sainz.
“The car is still in an early stage but already feels very good. For the whole team, whether engineers, mechanics or drivers, it’s very important to get to know the first real car as early as possible and to test and continue to develop it.”
On the first test day Dr Hackenberg and Sainz, both with co-driver Timo Gottschalk (Germany) at their side, drove about 100 kilometres on the 2.8- kilometre tarmac circuit. An initial functional test was followed by tuning and set-up work on the engine and the suspension, all of which was performed without any problems.
“The first test with the new Polo R WRC is a special moment and marks an important milestone in the preparations for our entry in the WRC,” said Dr Hackenberg.
“We’re well on schedule and are now able to start testing our concepts and developments in reality. The WRC is the top category in rally sport and a great challenge for the team, the drivers and the technology. We’re taking on this challenge and will be making efficient use of the time before we start into our first competition.”
Prior to competing in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) from 2013 onward, Volkswagen will intensively test and continue to develop the four-wheel drive vehicle that delivers an output of about 300 HP.
“The first Polo represents a preliminary stage of the subsequent rally car and during the upcoming months will serve as a test vehicle for various components such as engines, gearboxes or suspension parts,” said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Kris Nissen.
“The findings obtained in these tests will be directly fed into the first thorough-bred Polo R WRC.
“Next year we’ll be running an extensive testing program on tarmac, gravel, mud and snow in order to prepare ourselves for the 2013 season as best we can.”
In parallel to the tests with the Polo R WRC, Volkswagen is continuing its trial runs in the World Rally Championship. Next week German Sepp Wiegand and Dutchman Kevin Abbring will be competing in Wales Rally GB (10–13 November). At the fourth WRC test run this year the Volkswagen factory team is again fielding two Fabia cars of the Group’s Skoda brand in order to evaluate talents and gather valuable WRC event experiences.
Check out the official video from the ‘Premier’ test