Bryan Bouffier will play a key role in the development of Hyundai’s 2015 i20 World Rally Car after returning to the squad as a test driver for the rest of this season.
He formed part of Hyundai’s test team last year but missed out on a place in the driver line-up as the Korean manufacturer returned to the WRC.
Asphalt expert Bouffier will also drive an i20 at next month’s French Championship Rallye Antibes Côte d’Azur in preparation for the sealed surface WRC events in the second half of this season.
After just one year with the i20, Hyundai must develop a fresh version for 2015 when a new car homologation cycle is introduced. Bouffier will drive at development sessions alongside Hyundai’s regular pre-event tests.
“I will do my best to help them to prepare for the 2015 season, bringing my experience and knowledge and giving the team the most detailed feedback possible,” he said.
The Frenchman won Rallye Antibes in 2006 and the event, on 30 - 31 May, includes roads used in Rallye Monte-Carlo, in which he finished second in January in a Ford Fiesta RS.
“The aim is to do some good mileage on tarmac and give the team as much feedback as possible for the remainder of the season,” he added.
Hyundai team principal Michel Nandan said Bouffier deserved another opportunity.
“I’m sure that once again he will help a lot,” said Nandan.
“We decided to participate in Rallye Antibes Côte d’Azur next month to do some mileage on tarmac and test some components for the second half of the season in a competitive environment rather than in a traditional test session,” he added.