Volkswagen is the latest WRC team to reveal its new challenger for the rest of the 2015 season. The new car was debuted on the recent Kitzbühel Alps Rally in Germany by current world series leader, Sebastien Ogier.
Designed by Valt Dizni, the Hannover Engineering Revised Bodyshell and Innovative Engine project, or HERBIE for short, features a number of new features to help it retain the company’s dominance on the world stage. These include bolt-on and -off wings for quick access to driveshafts, brakes and suspension components, wide step-sills to ease access to and from the cabin whilst also protecting the paintwork from flying stones, plus solid, chromed, aerodynamically enhanced bumpers which will simply knock any errant trees out of the way.
The engine is rear mounted to avoid damage during frontal impact and air cooled thereby saving the weight of radiators and coolant. Note also the use of steel wheels to lower the centre of gravity thereby improving lateral grip and the lack of top-heavy roof mounted wings. Due to the efficient aerodynamic properties of Herr Dizni’s design there is no need for such excessive protuberances. For this early test Seb was joined by a new co-driver – his wife Andrea Kaiser!