Hyundai steps up R5 programme

Hyundai Motorsport will introduce two new i20 R5 cars in the next 18 months as the Korean squad enhances its offering for next year’s new-look WRC 2 and WRC 3 categories.

Team director Andrea Adamo is also investigating running a Hyundai WRC 2 team in 2020, but said he would only do that if it could be done in the correct manner as an official team.

“I would really like to do it,” he said. “I put an internal budget together, I want to do it in the proper way. For sure, I will need small support from customers because I don’t have the total budget, but I want to do it right. It would have to be the flagship of the R5 car,” he explained.

Craig Breen is currently testing revisions for a new i20 which will be homologated in time for January’s Rallye Monte-Carlo. The second car, to be based on the firm’s new i20 road car, is expected in the middle of 2021.

“From July we have started a serious development process, not that the process wasn’t serious before, but now we put even more energy because we had more people working in customer racing. When I started we were three people, we are now 70,” said Adamo.

“We are working on the dampers, the suspension and the engine and the target is to homologate the new components on January 1 to keep the current car up and running even more competitive than how much it is.”

Adamo said the ‘interim’ 2020 car was vital to maintain customer confidence in the product.

“We have to show our customers we are not throwing the towel in. We are working very, very hard to make the new R5 car right up there – we do this to keep our customers, otherwise our rivals will approach them,” he added.

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