Fri 09 Dec 2022

Kankkunen impressed by GR Yaris Rally2

Juha Kankkunen is confident Toyota Gazoo Racing has hit the mark with its GR Yaris Rally2 Concept Car – even though there is still a year’s worth of development to go into the new machine.

Revealed to the public at last month’s FORUM8 Rally Japan, the second-tier Yaris was an immediate hit with the four-time world champion who drove it.

“It’s a very good car,” said Kankkunen, “but the most important thing is that it’s an easy car to drive. For the competition at this [WRC2] level, this is what you need. 

“If somebody is coming to the car to drive it fast, they need to be able to trust it 100% from the start. If you are not comfortable, if you are fighting the car in the first corner, you cannot take the results. This Yaris, I felt comfortable straight away. I’m very happy for that.”

Kankkunen added that he had even thrown his name into the hat for more testing with the car next season.

He added: “I think the team, the engineers and the guys, they want feedback from as many drivers as possible to get an idea if they are going in the right direction.

“I have been driving all of these cars anyway, so I can tell my opinion what I think and what is the place you can improve the car a bit more, and concentrate for that and things. I did some testing with a [Ford] Fiesta R5 car in Lapland, with the full spikes (tyres), it would be good to go there with this car. I would like to drive it there.”

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