Evans and Rovanpera log first 2022 Yaris WRC test miles

Kalle Rovanpera and Elfyn Evans have logged their first miles in the new hybrid Toyota GR Yaris that will contest the 2022 World Rally Championship.

Evans and Rovanpera log first 2022 Yaris WRC test miles

The factory Toyota drivers have been testing the all-new Rally1 Yaris in France as development of the Japanese marque's 2022 WRC challenger ramps up.

Up until now testing has been conducted by Toyota's test driver Juho Hanninen, but this week's tarmac test in France, held near to the Monte Carlo rally route, allowed Evans and Rovanpera take the wheel for the first time.

That is significant as neither of the drivers have been officially confirmed to drive for Toyota next season, but it is widely expected both will be retained for next year along with Takamoto Katsuta.

The team's plans for its third manufacturer entry are yet to be resolved as seven-time champion Sebastien Ogier is set to partake in a partial campaign in 2022, with Esapekka Lappi the favourite to share the car.

Lappi has this week confirmed his return to the WRC's top flight courtesy of a drive in a privateer Yaris, run by the factory squad at October's Rally Finland. The drive is understood to be an opportunity to impress the team as discussions continue for next season.

The tarmac test for the new Yaris comes hot on the heels of an outing on gravel for the car in Finland, the team's home base.

 

Toyota technical director Tom Fowler says the new Yaris is making steady progress ahead of its debut next year.

"We're starting to jump forwards now," he told WRC.com. "Don't get me wrong, we still have a massive challenge ahead, but it's not quite so daunting as it was a month ago.

"A lot of the big things in the car are quite settled now, in terms of driveline transmission, suspension – all the things that take many months to manufacturer, we have quite a good picture on those."

The WRC continues next week with the return of the famous Acropolis Rally in Greece.

Toyota heads both the drivers' and manufacturers' standings, with Ogier leading team-mate Evans and Hyundai Motorsport's Thierry Neuville by 38 points.

shares
comments

Related video

Suninen announces rally return with WRC2 Rally Finland drive
Previous article

Suninen announces rally return with WRC2 Rally Finland drive

Next article

Katsuta favours fourth WRC Toyota over full factory seat for 2022

Katsuta favours fourth WRC Toyota over full factory seat for 2022
The key steps on Rovanpera's romp to a history-making WRC title Plus

The key steps on Rovanpera's romp to a history-making WRC title

With only cameo roles played by legendary Sebastiens Ogier and Loeb, Kalle Rovanpera ushered in the new hybrid era for the World Rally Championship by becoming its youngest champion. Here's how Toyota's Flying Finn crushed the competition, led by Hyundai's departing star Ott Tanak

WRC
Dec 1, 2022
How trailblazer Kalle Rovanpera has ripped up the WRC record book Plus

How trailblazer Kalle Rovanpera has ripped up the WRC record book

At the tender age of 22, Kalle Rovanpera is redefining what’s possible to achieve in rallying and inspiring a new legion of fans as a result. The newly-crowned World Rally Championship title-winner and his peers reflect on his ability and the start of his success in the top tier

WRC
Nov 26, 2022
How Hyundai and Neuville gatecrashed Toyota's homecoming party Plus

How Hyundai and Neuville gatecrashed Toyota's homecoming party

Thierry Neuville signed off the 2022 World Rally Championship season with his second win of the season in Japan after Toyota rival Elfyn Evans suffered a late puncture. With Sebastien Ogier and Kalle Rovanpera also delayed by punctures and incidents, it opened the door for Neuville and Ott Tanak to record Hyundai's second 1-2 of the season in Toyota's own backyard

WRC
Nov 14, 2022
The message a WRC stalwart sent which its new king couldn’t answer Plus

The message a WRC stalwart sent which its new king couldn’t answer

Sebastien Ogier might be the outgoing World Rally champion, but it didn’t stop him reminding everyone of the skills that made him an eight-time world champion. As victory at Rally Spain led Toyota’s charge to a titles clean sweep, it did pose a question to newly-crowned champion Kalle Rovanpera which he could not answer

WRC
Oct 24, 2022
Autosport gets to grips as a WRC co-driver Plus

Autosport gets to grips as a WRC co-driver

The majority of headlines may focus on the exploits of drivers in the World Rally Championship, but the challenges facing their co-drivers are no less demanding. Autosport got in the passenger seat with Toyota Gazoo Racing to find out just what it takes to succeed

WRC
Oct 6, 2022
How Rally New Zealand encapsulated record-breaking Rovanpera’s WRC title charge Plus

How Rally New Zealand encapsulated record-breaking Rovanpera’s WRC title charge

Kalle Rovanpera’s coronation as the new World Rally Championship king had been a long time coming, only to be postponed by hiccups in Belgium and Greece. But at Rally New Zealand the “Full Send” Finn demonstrated exactly how he's been able to rewrite the rallying record book as he stormed to victory to become the youngest ever world champion

WRC
Oct 3, 2022
How a Toyota lifeline reignited Lappi's WRC career Plus

How a Toyota lifeline reignited Lappi's WRC career

Motorsport can be brutal at times. One moment a driver can be the next big thing, but it can spiral in the other direction so quickly. Thankfully, sometimes drivers receive second chances. And Esapekka Lappi has taken his World Rally Championship lifeline in both hands

WRC
Sep 28, 2022
How team orders could make Hyundai's historic Acropolis Rally a Greek tragedy Plus

How team orders could make Hyundai's historic Acropolis Rally a Greek tragedy

Thierry Neuville led a maiden Hyundai 1-2-3 in the World Rally Championship, as the previously soft i20 N became a battle-hardened Greek warrior at the Acropolis Rally. But with team orders in play between the winner and Hyundai’s title protagonist Ott Tanak, could the result come back to haunt the team?

WRC
Sep 12, 2022