Hyundai has put its new hybrid Rally1 car through its paces during a test session in the south of France.
The prototype was put through an intensive preparation test on rough gravel roads at Hyundai Motorsport’s base in Alzenau, having only previously been driven during a private systems check test in Germany.
Based on Hyundai’s high-performance i20 N road vehicle, the all-new Rally1 car integrates the key technical features and hybrid power – in accordance with the FIA regulation for next year’s championship – as well as all the experience and learnings that the team has accumulated in recent seasons.
Hyundai is one of three manufacturers to commit to the World Rally Championship’s next era, alongside rivals Toyota and M-Sport, the latter of which tested its Rally1 car last month.
Hyundai has an intensive testing schedule planned across several different European venues, including asphalt, gravel and snow, to further evaluate its new car ahead of its 2022 debut.
“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 team principal Andrea Adamo. “In the case of the 2022 Rally1 challenger, we are starting from scratch with brand-new rules, a different concept and a new base model, the Hyundai i20 N.
“It was thrilling to kick-off the testing and to start this exciting new adventure. During last week’s session 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.
“The team at Hyundai Motorsport 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 interesting times ahead of us before Rallye Monte-Carlo 2022.”