Hyundai Motorsport has released images of its new i20 N Rally1 that it hopes will carry it to World Rally Championship glory in 2022.
With less than two weeks to go until the Monte Carlo Rally season opener, Hyundai was the first WRC team to reveal the livery its new hybrid challenger will carry.
The new-shape i20 N Rally1 is visually quite different to its i20 Coupe WRC predecessor with a five-door body style and less aerodynamic devices as per the new Rally1 ruleset, but the paint scheme is in keeping with all of the other rally cars Hyundai Motorsport has competed with since 2014 with its distinctive bright blue and orange mixed with the logos of primary sponsor Shell.
Hyundai Motorsport president Scott Noh – who is effectively the stand-in team principal since Andrea Adamo left last month, with a replacement yet to be found – is looking forward to the new challenge.
“We are excited to be part of this new hybrid era of WRC and to demonstrate Hyundai’s firm commitment to international motorsport,” Noh said.
“WRC is about putting the most technically advanced cars, driven and navigated by the best crews, on the world’s toughest stages: the 2022 season is set to take things to the next level.
“Furthermore, from a corporate perspective, it is important for Hyundai to be associated with road-relevant technology; the WRC move to hybrid brings together the brand’s motorsport and road car activities.
“We are confident we have the package to fight for our third manufacturers’ title – and to support our crews to be in the hunt for the drivers’ and co-drivers’ titles too.”
Thierry Neuville, Ott Tänak and Oliver Solberg will drive the three i20s on the Monte, but Solberg will share the third seat with Dani Sordo throughout the season.
“I always love to start new adventures and challenges, so that’s the most exciting part about these new hybrid regulations,” said Neuville.
“Our target remains unchanged from previous seasons. As a team we want to fight for the manufacturers’ championship again, but the drivers’ title is always one of my personal targets, which we are chasing.
“In this new era, everybody is going to want to show their performance, as well as their reliability which is going to be crucial this year. We have made good steps with our new Hyundai i20 N Rally1.
“With every test, we have been able to feel more comfortable in the car, but the beginning of the season is a learning period for all crews and teams. I can really see an exciting season but probably with a lot of ups-and-downs for everybody.”