Hyundai is poised to return to the FIA World Rally Championship and has this week unveiled a rally-ready version based on the New i20 at the Paris Motor Show.
Following its withdrawal from motorsport in 2003, Hyundai’s long-term goal was to set up an in-house WRC team in Europe and develop a performance rally car, resulting in the WRC i20’s debut in Paris.
Mark Hall, Marketing Director at Hyundai Motor Europe, commented: “The World Rally Championship is recognised as one of the most dramatic sporting series on Earth. It’s a spectacle filled with excitement and dynamism − the perfect embodiment of the Hyundai brand.
“The WRC also offers the most technologically-diverse challenge for an automotive manufacturer. Our participation will demonstrate Hyundai’s engineering excellence and durability, and will also help to enhance our passenger vehicles in future.”
The company’s involvement in the sport began in 1998, when it competed in the F2 class of the WRC for two seasons. In 1999, the team announced it would step up to the top class in 2000, rallying a fully-developed WRC car based on the three-door Accent, which competed until 2003.