Hyundai unveils upgraded i20 WRC at Geneva
Hyundai Motorsport has taken another significant step towards its forthcoming participation in the FIA World Rally Championship with the unveiling of its latest specification i20 WRC car at the Geneva Motor Show.
Hyundai is gearing up to its 2014 campaign with a year of private testing and development.
A first iteration of the car made its debut at the Paris Motor Show last September, but this latest model incorporates notable updates to the exterior bodywork and suspension. The upgrades are the result of collaborative work between Hyundai’s R&D facility in Namyang, Korea and the newly formed Hyundai Motorsport GmbH in Alzenau, Germany, headed up by veteran WRC man Michel Nandan.
“We are still in the infancy of our exciting WRC programme so the development curve for the car and team is steep,” said Nandan.
“This latest version of the i20 WRC has centred on aerodynamics with the objective of improving the car’s cooling systems. A new rear wing and front spoiler give the i20 WRC a new external appearance while, under the bodywork, improvements have also been made to the suspension kinematics and chassis stiffness as we gear up for a more structured test programme later in the year.”
In the two months since his appointment, Team Principal Michel Nandan has focused on establishing the core Hyundai WRC team at Alzenau with key technical, logistics and motorsport specialists joining the new manufacturer team.
“Building up a new motorsport facility from scratch is an ambitious and rewarding challenge. We have begun the recruitment process but already have a number of key people in place who bring with them a wealth of rally and motorsport experience. We are rapidly building up the team infrastructure and are pleased that everything is running to schedule.”
Still to be confirmed is just who will drive during the test programme and any line-up for the 2014 season.