Hyundai Motorsport has reported that its all-new i20 R5 successfully concluded its first tarmac test, as part of four days of development work in the south of France.
Over the four days, the team evaluated a revised cooling system behind the redesigned front bumper and bonnet, under which lay an improved 1.6 direct injection turbo engine fitted with a 32mm restrictor and a mandatory five-speed gearbox. The updated engine is the first development stage of many scheduled before the New Generation i20 R5’s planned homologation this summer.
The opening two days of the test were spent on the Fontjoncouse gravel course with an on-site rebuild carried out to convert the car to tarmac specification. The time on gravel allowed the Customer Project department to assess the chassis and suspension developments made following feedback from last month’s test. The two days of tarmac testing then allowed the team to run the car with the different suspension settings and larger brakes as allowed by the R5 class regulations for rallies on sealed surface.
“We’re really pleased to have such a high level of interest in the New Generation i20 R5 programme at this stage,” stated Andrew Johns, Hyundai Motorsport Customer Project senior sales associate. “That there are customers approaching Hyundai Motorsport from Europe, Asia and Australasia shows the excitement that exists for bringing a new manufacturer to the R5 category. To have confirmed orders is a reward to the entire Customer Project for the work already completed and a boost as the testing schedule fills up between now and homologation in the summer. Starting tarmac tests with the i20 R5 is important given our aim of having customers rally the car in a variety of championships. They will need to be able to rely on the Hyundai i20 R5 to be equally competitive on the gravel and tarmac surfaces so it is important that we prepare for that during this testing phase at the same time as we increase the reliability and performance. To do this we have tests planned across Europe to make sure we give our customers the best car possible when deliveries begin later in the year.”