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2017 Hyundai i20 WRC rally car previewed at Paris motor show

Published: 29 September 2016

► Latest i20 rally car, built to 2017 WRC regs
► More power, more differential, more aero
► Glad your gran’s Hyundai doesn’t have 375bhp?

Just in case the RN30 concept didn’t fulfil the 2016 Paris motor show’s obligatory wing quota, Hyundai’s also brought along a preview of its 2017 World Rally Championship car, based on the latest i20.

The new i20 WRC car is built to the 2017’s updated technical regs – giving the designers greater aerodynamic freedom as well as allowing more power and extra all-wheel-drive tech.

You say this is only a preview of the 2017 Hyundai i30 WRC?

That’s right – both the livery and the exact spec are subject to change, as Hyundai has still has a programme of testing to complete before the end of 2016.

The proper job will be revealed in December. Despite this, testing on the 2017 car actually began back in April, such is the pace of competition in this arena.

What’s new in the 2017 WRC technical regs then?

More power, for starters – the i20’s 2.0-litre turbo engine is now allowed to output 375bhp (which just coincidentally happens to be the same figure as the RN30 concept).

2017 Hyundai i20 WRC

In addition to this, Hyundai can also run an active electronically-controlled centre differential and more downforce in 2017 – all with the aim of creating a bigger spectacle for fans, and enabling short, narrow cars like the i20 to compete with longer, wider rivals.

How’s Hyundai doing in the WRC anyway?

The firm’s latest assault on the rally world championship is now in its second full season, and Hyundai hopes to consolidate second place in the 2016 manufacturer standings at the Tour de Corse-Rallye de France this weekend (1-2 October 2016).

With four rounds to go in total, Volkswagen remains the team to beat in WRC. But Hyundai has had its most successful year ever so far, with outright victories in Argentina and Sardinia, and four further podiums in Monte-Carlo, Sweden, Poland and Germany.

See more from the Paris motor show here

By CJ Hubbard

Former CAR magazine associate editor, road tester, organiser, extremely variable average wheel count

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