Friday | 15 Jan 2021

First pictures: 2021 Hyundai i20 World Rally Car

Hyundai Motorsport has today (Friday) given WRC fans their first view of the i20 World Rally Car with which it will defend the FIA World Rally Championship manufacturers’ title this year.

The Korean manufacturer is embarking on its eighth season in rallying’s top fight, spearheaded by Ott Tänak and Thierry Neuville. Dani Sordo and Craig Breen will share the third car.

The squad’s preparations were disrupted this morning when Neuville announced a split with long-term co-driver Nicolas Gilsoul. The Belgian will instead be partnered by fellow countryman Martijn Wydaeghe in next week’s season-opening Rallye Monte Carlo (21 - 24 January).

Wydaeghe has 18 WRC starts to his name and his relationship with Hyundai began in 2016 when he joined forces with Chewon Lim as part of the team’s driver development programme. The bulk of his WRC experience came alongside Guillaume de Mevius when they tackled WRC2 in 2019.

Monte-Carlo will mark the final appearance of Carlos Del Barrio alongside Sordo. Borja Rozada will join Sordo for his subsequent 2021 appearances as Del Barrio moves to partner Fabrizio Zaldivar in WRC3.

Team principal Andrea Adamo said the recipe for 2021 remained unaltered.

“We need to keep working as hard as we did in previous seasons, and we have to be focused,” he said.

“We must forget what we have done so far because we cannot rely on the past – we have to build our future. Our approach has to be exactly the same as it was in the second half of the 2020 season. We have to fight for victory at every event, and we are facing fierce competition.”

• Full coverage from Rallye Monte-Carlo will be available on WRC+ All Live here, including every stage broadcast as it happens as well as key interviews, features and expert analysis from the service park..

Video: Rallye Monte-Carlo magazine