Hyundai's WRC team developing an R5-specification i20

Hyundai will have a World Rally Championship WRC-2 specification i20 ready to compete by the middle of next season, with testing expected to start later this year

Hyundai's WRC team developing an R5-specification i20

Despite already being committed to building a new i20 WRC, the Alzenau-based team received a request from Hyundai's Korean HQ for the brand's motorsport programme to be more engaging around the world.

To be built to R5 regulations, the resulting new car will be eligible for the European Rally Championship and a host of domestic championships.

"I think customer activity is very important," Hyundai team principal Michel Nandan said.

"The World Rally Car is only for the WRC and a couple of other championships around the world.

"The only category of car you can run all around the world is R5, so it's a good decision from Hyundai to build the R5 - it shows they are here to compete in motorsport.

"It shows the global marketing and the sporting image of the company."

Nandan added that the R5 would use the same shell as the new World Rally Car, which made the process of building it to new regulations slightly easier.

"We are using a lot of the work done for the WRC car," he said.

"The roll cage philosophy's the same, we use the same shell, it's just the parts we put into the car.

"The R5 has much cheaper parts - the same upright for every corner and only two types of wishbone. It is more of a compromise car than a race car!

"But having the WRC agreed made our life more easy once the wish came from Korea to have an R5 car."

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