Hyundai i20 WRC
Time was the biggest challenge facing our team in creating the 2014-specification Hyundai i20 WRC. From a blank sheet of paper to a competitive rally in just twelve months, it was a huge achievement.
An evolution of a vehicle designed by Hyundai’s R&D centre in Namyang, the car was prepared at our headquarters in Alzenau to meet FIA regulations. We carried out extensive testing in a range of conditions to fully assess transmission and suspension. 8,000 kilometres were completed from May 2013 up to our WRC debut in January 2014. Our hard work certainly paid off; we scored our first podium in Mexico and our maiden victory with a 1-2 in Germany.
Hyundai i20 WRC
After a valuable year of learning, our challenger for 2015 saw the benefits of our first full season. The i20 WRC had already been significantly developed during 2014 to enhance competitiveness and reliability.
We continued to make improvements throughout our second year. An engine joker was introduced in Rally Mexico, to deliver more power. This upgrade was ratified on our in-house engine test bench. We also introduced a paddle shift in Argentina, which allowed our drivers to extract more consistent performance from the car. The main focus for 2015, though, was on development of the New Generation i20 WRC, which would be introduced for the following season. It was another ambitious phase for our team with two car projects running concurrently, and with more podium success along the way!
New Generation i20 WRC
For our third season in WRC, we developed an all-new car based on the New Generation i20. The car was rolled out for the first time in Autumn 2014, and underwent a comprehensive test programme.
From evaluation of components and settings, right up to performance runs, our focus was on both pace and durability. It was the first car built using the full range of capability at our Alzenau factory. With upgrades on bodywork, engine, transmission and suspension, the car was a significant step in all areas. The NG i20 WRC was on the pace immediately with podiums in Monte-Carlo and Sweden. These results were quickly followed by victories in Argentina and Sardinia. With two wins and a total of 12 podium results, this car secured our team second in the Manufacturers’ Championship and helped to establish us as genuine contenders against more experienced competitors.
Hyundai i20 WRC Coupé
Our third car in four seasons, the Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC, was designed and developed to meet a raft of brand new WRC technical regulations introduced for 2017.
The changes were introduced to enhance the overall spectacle of WRC, with cars sporting an aggressive new look. Updates centred on improving aerodynamic and mechanical grip, with an increase in engine power from 300 to 380bhp, a reduction in the overall weight of the car, and the re-introduction of the active centre differential.
The three-door car completed an intensive period of testing ahead of its debut, as part of a development programme that was run alongside our 2016 WRC campaign. Against tough competition, the car led in its opening two rallies before going on to register a total of four victories in the season – twice the number of its predecessor, with 12 podiums and 91 stage wins.