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New rally regulations: aggressive and wide cars with around 380 hp

New rally regulations
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S Those involved were so in agreement. When it came to the question of what the top-tier WRC (World Rally Car) rally cars should look like after the current regulations expire at the end of 2016, the FIA ​​Rally Commission, unanimously with manufacturers, marketers and fans, decided one thing above all: wilder.

Greater aerodynamic freedom

The world association even initiated a study in which fans could vote on how the cars of their favorite sport should look in the future. Already in spring, all manufacturers involved agreed after internal meetings, the rally commission submitted a proposal paper in Paris, which the FIA ​​World Council has now confirmed without ifs and buts.

The key data of the future regulations include the a much more powerful engine. Since the prohibition of the technically overdone group B at the end of 1986, an upper limit of 300 hp has officially been in force, which, in view of the prescribed values ​​for cubic capacity and diameter of the air mass limiter, has never been observed. The current 1.6-liter turbos develop around 320 hp with a restrictor of 33 millimeters in diameter. From 2017, thanks to 36 millimeters of air flow at a maximum boost pressure of 2.5 bar, it should be around 380 hp. In addition, the minimum weight has been reduced by 25 kilograms to 1,175 kilograms. The current cars are already below the required limit of 1,200 kilos.

But the cars should not only gain in aggressiveness internally. The maximum width of 1,820 millimeters increases to 1,875 millimeters, which means that the wheel arches grow by almost three centimeters on each side, which will increase cornering speeds, especially on asphalt. In order to make the visual appearance even more blatant, greater aerodynamic freedom is allowed for both the front spoiler and the rear wing. Larger cooling air openings are also permitted in the front apron. The model for the new generation of vehicles is, of all things, Group B, which was uncontrollable in the eighties, as FIA rally president Jarmo Mahonen frankly admits.

Ogier believes in a better show

The 600 hp monsters ala Audi Quattro S1, Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 or Lancia Delta S4 are still the benchmarks among fans to this day. With the help of the M-Sport team, the FIA ​​had a computer retouching based on the Ford Fiesta designed to give an example of what future cars could look like.

Both the team bosses and those responsible for the FIA ​​are agree that massive wind tunnel work such as inDTM or Formula 1 can probably be excluded. Citroën sports director Yves Matton, one of the biggest advocates of the new rules, has already made it clear several times that his company will only stick to the bar if the costs do not increase Allow significantly higher speeds and thus prevent security problems. However, the latest FIA decision of July 11th should only provide the basic data. There is still almost six months until all the details have to be clarified. Then the teams will have a year to develop the future cars.

At the moment there is euphoria everywhere. 'The suggestions for the appearance and performance of the new cars are great,' says world champion Sébastien Ogier on behalf of his colleagues. Naturally, they have long wanted more performance. The chassis and brakes of the WRC can easily handle the 50 to 60 hp thrust. 'That's good for the show', Ogier is sure.

WRC cars should continue to be based on B-segment

In addition, the active players are happy about another rule change. At the request of the Toyota team returning in 2017, active center differentials are allowed again. The previously prescribed, rigid through-drive allows the drivers to struggle with more or less understeer.

All manufacturers agree that the future generation of the WRC should also be based on the B-segment (small car). For safety reasons, the cars shouldn't be too small. The FIA ​​will in future require a length of at least 3.90 meters. 'We'll keep an eye on the issue of safety,' promises FIA technology boss Bernard Niclot.

The marketer can hardly contain his euphoria: 'We worked a lot on these regulations. I can hardly wait to see the first drafts of the new cars, 'says promoter Oliver Ciesla. Ford team boss Malcolm Wilson, who actually has the smallest budget for new developments, says optimistically: 'This will be the beginning of a new, exciting era.'

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