by royal appointment
Citroen has marked its close ties with the Rallye Monte-Carlo by giving Prince Albert II of Monaco the car Sebastien Loeb drove to victory there in 2013.
The DS3 World Rally Car will go on public display as part of the Monaco Top Cars Collection founded by Albert’s father, Prince Rainier III.
Loeb and co-driver Daniel Elena claimed seven Monte Carlo victories between 2003 and 2013, while Monaco-born Elena has become the Principality’s most decorated sportsman, with 78 rally wins and nine World Championship titles.
Prince Albert was presented with the car at the weekend, when he visited the Citroen Racing team during the French round of the FIA WTCC at the Paul Ricard Circuit. After a tour of the pits with Daniel Elena, the prince was given a taste of track action, going for a spin in a two-seater Citroën C-Elysée WTCC with Loeb.
Prince Albert said the ride alongside Loeb had been a real thrill: “I already knew this circuit well, as I have raced here myself, but what I experienced today was something else! It’s also very exciting to have this World Rally Championship-winning Citroën join the collection created by my father, which I try to improve year by year. It will have a special place.”
Citroën Racing boss Yves Matton said: “Citroën Racing has great memories of participating in the Monte-Carlo Rally, not least the 1-2-3 achieved by Sébastien Loeb, Carlos Sainz and Colin McRae at the 2003 edition. But the thing we will remember best about Monaco is Daniel Elena! He is synonymous with the team, and it’s a kind of tribute to him be giving a Citroën DS3 WRC to the Monaco Top Cars Collection.”