The double Production Car world champion had been driving the 2011-specification model in this season’s FIA World Rally Championship but has secured a John Cooper Works WRC 01B, similar to the one used by Dani Sordo since Vodafone Rally de Portugal in March, for the rallies in Germany, Great Britain, France, Italy and Spain.
Bruno De Pianto, Araujo’s boss at WRC Team MINI Portugal, welcomed the move, especially in a country of such importance to the BMW-owned manufacturer.
“While MINIs seem at home more or less anywhere in the world, Germany is a country central to the heart and heritage of the car, so where better for WRC Team MINI Portugal to debut the upgraded car,” said De Pianto. “Armindo will have time before the event to test the car and after finishing eighth overall there in a MINI last year we hope for another good result.”
The John Cooper Works WRC 01B features more than 100 changes to the original version, including a new exhaust manifold, electrical water pump, fan belt, dampers, plus measures to reduce the overall weight by 10 kilograms such as the fitting of a lithium-ion battery and a lighter rear spoiler.