News this morning that the debut of the new generation Hyundai i20 World Rally Car has been delayed. Originally it had been hoped that we would see the car in action some time mid season, but this has been put off till next year. There’s nothing wrong with the car or its spec, it is simply down to a delay with FIA Homologation requirements.
Apparently Hyundai is having to alter production plans for its new generation 3 and 5 door i20 due to its soaring public demand. Last year the company achieved record volumes of car sales in the UK and more records have been set in the first three months of this year!
Meanwhile, over in Spain the Hyundai World Rally Team have just completed a four day test in Almeria with the new car. Test driver Kevin Abbring was joined by Thierry Neuville for the test which concentrated on engine and chassis development, as well as altitude testing
A series of upgrades will be introduced to the current Hyundai i20 WRCs in the remaining rallies of 2015 in a bid to help the team fight for podiums regularly in only its second season in the competitive World Rally Championship.
Team Principal Michel Nandan commented: “Kevin and Thierry worked on engine and chassis development, as well as altitude tests, which will help us to further develop the car as we move through 2015. We had hoped to introduce the new car later this season but unfortunately an issue with the homologation schedule - related to production of the three-door road version – will delay our programme. We have therefore opted to continue focus on the five-door version of the New Generation i20 WRC which will compete at Rallye Monte-Carlo 2016. This revised schedule gives us extra time to ensure the car is where we want it to be performance-wise. At the same time, the current Hyundai i20 WRC will undergo a number of important updates which we hope will keep us in the fight for podiums this season.”