Hyundai delays new World Rally Championship i20 to 2016

Hyundai has delayed its new World Rally Championship i20 until 2016 and canned plans for the next car to be a three-door version

Hyundai delays new World Rally Championship i20 to 2016

The team had intended to run a three-door coupe i20 for its next generation World Rally Car and had scheduled its debut for the second half of this year.

Road car production problems have now diverted those plans significantly.

A five-door New Generation i20 WRC will replace the current car, but not until the 2016 Monte Carlo Rally.

Hyundai team principal Michel Nandan said: "We had hoped to introduce the new car later this season but unfortunately an issue with the homologation schedule - related to production of the three-door road version - will delay our programme.

"We have therefore opted to continue focus on the five-door version of the New Generation i20 WRC which will compete at Rally Monte Carlo 2016.

"This revised schedule gives us extra time to ensure the car is where we want it to be performance-wise.

"At the same time, the current Hyundai i20 WRC will undergo a number of important updates which we hope will keep us in the fight for podiums this season."

Thierry Neuville and Kevin Abbring recently completed a four-day test of the new five-door car in Spain.

"We had a very detailed week of testing planned in Spain recently, as we put an upgraded version of our New Generation i20 WRC through its paces in the Almeria region," said Nandan.

"Kevin and Thierry worked on engine and chassis development, as well as altitude tests, which will help us to further develop the car as we move through 2015."

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