A camouflaged Hyundai hybrid rally car was seen testing the dirt tracks in the south of France as the South Korean carmaker’s global motorsport division prepares for the World Rally Championship’s (WRC) newest technical challenge.
The Hyundai hybrid challenger is part of the brand’s commitment to WRC’s brand-new hybrid era.
“It’s a special moment when you take a car to the road for the first time and as always there are some challenges to face,” said Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT Team Principal Andrea Adamo.
“In the case of our 2022 Rally1 challenger, we are starting from scratch with brand-new rules, a different concept and a new base model — the i20 N. It was thrilling to kick off the testing and to start this exciting new adventure,” he added.
Hyundai is yet to reveal who was driving the hybrid rally car but we suspect that it could either be Thierry Neuville or Ott Tänak as both lead drivers signed new multi-year contracts with the team earlier this month.
According to Hyundai, the team will now ramp up the development of the i20 N-based rally car and will put it through its paces on different venues across Europe. The Rally1 car’s performance is to be assessed to make sure everything is set before its 2022 debut.
“We have seen interesting things, some that need to be changed and improved, but it is all part of the process and of the job,” says Andrea.
“The team has done an amazing job and has worked so hard to prepare the car for the first test in such a short amount of time. Of course, we are just at the beginning of a long journey, but I do think we have some interesting times ahead of us before Rallye Monte-Carlo 2022,” added the team principal.
Hyundai’s WRC rivals have also been testing their future entries in recent weeks.
Photos from WRC