The FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) steps into a promising future in 2017. More powerful, faster and more spectacular – the Polo R WRC will generate about 380 hp/280 kW in the future. That is roughly 60 hp/45 kW more than the current car (318 hp/235 kW). Lighter, wider, and with more aerodynamic freedom – the Volkswagen designers have produced a visual concept which reveals how the Polo R WRC may appear in the coming season. Volkswagen has been developing the third generation of the Polo R WRC since summer 2015, when the International Automobile Federation (FIA) released the newregulations for the highest class of rallying in the world. Having already successfully tested key components in the current chassis, development of Volkswagen’s third World Rally Car is now entering the crucial phase.
About 50 millimetres wider, 25 kilograms lighter and with roughly 380 hp/280 kW – that is the key data for the 2017 rally Polo. The increase in power of about 60 hp/45kW is achieved by widening the air restrictor from 33 millimetres, as it is at present, to 36 millimetres. Furthermore, an electronic centre differential can now be used for the power transmission. The most visually striking changes are the larger rear wing and broader front spoiler. The minimum length of the car is now 3,900 millimetres, whilst the minimum weight is reduced from 1,200 to 1,175 kilograms.
Although the new technical components have already been applied in numerous tests, the appearance of the Polo R WRC will still change significantly by the start of the season at the Rally Monte Carlo in January 2017. Whilst the final phase of development of the Polo R WRC is already under way, Volkswagen currently tops the standings in all of the classifications in this year’s world championship, having won the first three rallies of the season. The team from Wolfsburg’s next outing is the fourth WRC round of the year – the Rally Argentina (21- 24 April 2016).