The latest images of Citroën's World Rally Championship challenging C3 Concept
Citroën come off Citroën's 2017 World Rally weapon concept Racing has provided the best preview yet of how the more aerodynamically aggressive new breed of World Rally Car will look in 2017.
Citroën’s new rally challenger — officially billed as the C3 WRC Concept — is set to appear at the Paris Motor Show next week and is expected to change only minor details of its appearance before homologation is finalised in readiness for its competition debut at the Monte Carlo Rally next January.
The car represents a comeback to the FIA World Rally Championship for Citroën Racing after a part-time programme in 2016 — although one that has produced two victories for Kris Meeke in the current generation DS3 WRC.
Citroën Racing says the concept is very close to the finished WRC challenger without giving away its final form. It’s based on New C3 with the stylistic elements of the production model including its two-level light signature, two-tone body/roof and accents matching the colours of the roof.
Some of the decorative touches applied to the concept — such as dual chrome chevrons that extend across towards the LED daytime running lights and roof adorned with a gel capsule and a yellow border — may not make it to the special stages.
New WRC rules for 2017 allow greater freedom with aerodynamics with an increased maximum width of 1875mm and by allowing a protruding front bumper and a rear bumper fitted with a diffuser. An enlarged rear spoiler is moved further back to provide increased downforce.
Other changes that will deliver a performance gain for the new generation cars will see engine power increased by about 50bhp to around 380bhp by using a larger 38mm diameter turbo restrictor while the cars can be 25kg lighter and electronically controlled differential will return to the sport.
Citroën achieved eight WRC Manufacturers’ titles between 2003 and 2012 with its previous Xsara, C4 and DS3 models. It has racked up 96 WRC event wins and Citroën powered Sebastien Loeb to nine consecutive Driver’s titles between 2004 and 2012.