Abiteboul explains Hyundai's decision to develop further the current i20N

The team principal of Hyundai Motorsport, Cyril Abiteboul, criticizes harshly the FIA's decision to drop the current Rally1 cars at the end of 2024 calling the new cars as a crap and supports his team's commitment to develop further the current i20N. 

FIA announced some major changes to the regulations which will applied at the end of this year. More specifically, the current Rally1 cars will be running without the hybrid units and with less aerodynamics on the rear as well as a reduced air restrictor which means the 2025-spec cars will be less stable and driveable due to the fewer downforce. Although Toyota is the only WRC team which has already completed a tarmac test with the new Yaris, Hyundai and M-Sport Ford have not scheduled a test with their next year's cars yet. In fact, the Alzenau-based team has limited only on the simulator for the development of the new i20N and has been given the green light by its rivals to use some additional jokers to bring some upgrades to the current i20N during that season in order to make a more competitive and reliable car for 2025. Last but not least, more details on the new WRC regulations will be revealed on the upcoming World Motor Council which will be held on June 11. 

"We found the 2025 car very tricky because it is a massive loss of downforce, so it massively changes the balance of the car", Abiteboul said.

"The weight distribution of the car will be changed, and mechanical balance and aero balance will be massively changed.

"It will be a pretty crap car to drive and that is a big concern as at the end of the day we have a responsibility to make sure we have a car that is optimised.

"It is a bit ludicrous to believe you can make such a radical change in the car and not give the manufacturers the opportunity in terms of time or homologation joker use to re-optimise the whole package.

"That is why the car will end up being a sub-optimal product for what is an FIA world championship.

"You will find out that the drivers are very very unhappy with this car, and I don’t want to talk about the safety side of things, but it could be very difficult to control.

"I know everyone will say 'just drive slower', but still if the fundamental characteristic of the car is wrong, I don’t think it is up to the standard of this championship. 

"This is why we have decided not to develop that car but to focus on the car we have now".

Source: Motorsport.com

Photo Credits: Hyundai

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