Monday | 06 Mar 2023

Citroën plans evolutions for C3 Rally2

Citroën’s C3 Rally2 is set to undergo a raft of technological upgrades over the course of 2023, it has been revealed.

The car, which is a frontrunner in the WRC2 category, was first launched in R5 guise back in 2018. It received a series of major updates for the 2021 season to bring it up to Rally2 specification, in line with the FIA’s Rally Car Pyramid.

Now, the French manufacturer is planning more improvements for its support category challenger, with a myriad of tweaks expected in the engine, transmission, suspension and aerodynamics departments.

“The development of this kind of car is never finished,” explained Didier Clément, Head of Citroën Customer Racing. “We are all the time working to improve it in small details. We saw this in the past with the Xsara, C4, DS3 and the C3 in the WRC.

“We will have an overall improvement,” he continued. “We are working on some different things with the engine, and we are working on the software of some parts. We will improve the suspension and the aero as well, and also the behaviour of the differentials. When you add together all of these small details, at the end it will be a big step.”

The updates will likely be implemented on a gradual basis throughout the season, with factory-supported drivers like Yohan Rossel - himself a long-time C3 stalwart and current points leader in WRC2 - expected to test them in competition first. They will then be made available to the wider customer market.

“A good WRC2 car is not designed for top drivers like Yohan Rossel, Yoann Bonato, Mads Østberg and so on,” Clément said. “It’s designed for everybody.

“Yohan, Yoann, Stéphane Lefebvre and Alejandro Cachón have all driven the car in official test sessions. They have enough experience to be able to develop the car, not only for the professional drivers, but for everybody.”

No less than five manufacturers are represented in this year’s WRC2 championship with drivers in Citroën, Ford, Hyundai, Škoda and Volkswagen machinery all registered to score points. Top-flight squad Toyota Gazoo Racing is also developing a GR Yaris Rally2, which is expected to be homologated for us next year.

That, Clément says, is fantastic to see.

“It’s completely amazing in WRC2. Who is able to know the final winner? Nobody! It’s brilliant.

“WRC2 is a really important class for us because the fight at the top is very exciting. Most of the time there are 10 or 12 top drivers in every event, with 30 or 40 cars in the class. It’s definitely a big success story of the FIA regulations and it’s very important for us to be there.”

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