Based on the Korean car firm’s i20, the announcement at the Paris Motor Show this morning means that as many as five manufacturers are set to be active in the WRC’s top tier from next season, with Citroen, Ford, MINI and Volkswagen all set for action.
Mark Hall, Hyundai Motor Europe’s marketing director, said: “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.”
Hyundai began competing in the WRC in 1998 and launched its first World Rally Car, based on the Accent, in 2000. It called time on its motorsport activities towards the end of the 2003 season but always vowed to return with its own in-house operation, full details of which are due to be released soon along with news on the driver line-up and schedule for next year.