Hyundai completes first significant test of 2014-spec i20 WRC
|By David Evans||Monday, May 27th 2013, 08:20 GMT|
Hyundai has conducted the first significant test of its i20 World Rally Car, running in 2014 specification in France last week.
The car, which is scheduled for a competitive debut in Monte Carlo next January, completed 350 miles of asphalt running in three days.
Prior to its French outing, the car had completed an installation test close to the Hyundai Motorsport team base in Alzenau, Germany.
Hyundai team principal Michel Nandan said: "It has been a busy few months here at Hyundai Motorsport as we prepared to kick-off our testing programme to get ready for the 2014 FIA World Rally Championship.
"After starting our operations from scratch at the Alzenau factory in early January, we have been developing the car and now we can put the theory into practice.
"The car is on the road and I have to admit it was quite an emotional moment to see the latest specification of the i20 WRC in action for the first time."
The French test was just the beginning of what will be a hectic test programme for the rest of the season as Hyundai aims to develop its first 1.6-litre World Rally Car in the next seven months.
Nandan added: "We have an intensive testing schedule for the rest of 2013 which will take us to different venues across Europe, to evaluate the i20 WRC in different conditions and on different terrains which reflect the variety of circumstances we will encounter in the World Rally Championship next year.
"We are not disclosing our specific test venues or the names of the various drivers we will have but we will ensure that every aspect of the car's performance is put to the test and thoroughly evaluated without leaving anything to chance."
The team would not be drawn on who was driving the i20 WRC test car, admitting only that it was not one of the Korean drivers who had completed running in the earlier incarnations of the rally car.