HYUNDAI R5 BRC RUN UNLIKELY THIS SEASON
Hyundai’s i20 R5 is unlikely to appear in this season’s British Rally Championship after it emerged that the car’s homologation inspection isn’t planned until October.
It had been hoped the Korean machine could tackle August’s Ulster Rally or Rally Isle of Man in September.
However, until it’s homologated by motorsport’s world governing body, the FIA, it can only run in the National Rally Cup class of the British championship for cars with an MSA log book.
Hyundai Motorsport boss Michel Nandan said: “On the performance we are not so bad, we are doing some more tests next week and then again later in the month. We have a high-temperature test on asphalt and some more minor set-up changes to test on gravel, but these are both to help establish the customer base [set-up]. After that, there’s one more test before homologation in October.”
Nandan reported there was already strong interest in the car from customers, saying: “We’ve had between 10 and 15 people interested [in buying one], so that’s a good start, but we are not going to rush this – we want to be sure everything is perfect. Really this is the car for next year.”
The i20 R5 made a successful debut public appearance on the Ypres Rally in Belgium two weeks ago, running as a course car on the European Rally Championship round with Briton Seb Marshall co-driving Dutchman Kevin Abbring.
Event sources confirmed that the car had clocked stage times faster than rally winner and local legend Freddy Loix managed in a Skoda Fabia R5.
MN understands that further decisions on the i20 R5’s future plans are expected in the next two weeks.
All four types of R5 car in existence (Citroen DS3, Ford Fiesta, Peugeot 208 and Skoda Fabia) compete in the BRC.