News and Rumors Open Thread

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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 07 Aug 2013 21:52

Pirelli will rejoin the WRC next year! Hankook is also interested in becoming a WRC tire supplier.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 13 Nov 2013 07:58

http://fr.autoblog.com/2013/10/27/le-wr ... e-en-2015/

Site is in French, but it points out that there is a possibility that Africa might host a WRC round in 2015. The article mentions that Ivory Coast submitted a proposal for an event, but Madagascar an South Africa are also interested as well.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby ChrisB » 18 Dec 2013 20:19

Oh I hope it is Cote d'Ivoire with all that rain forest. South Africa is about as far south as San Remo and Monte Carlo is north, in August they even sometimes have snow. Nothing agains South Africa, but if we travel all the way to Africa, then make the event look like Africa too!
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 01 Feb 2014 23:44

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/112372

Toyota is considering the WRC but not until 2017 at the earliest. Toyota will have a Yaris WRC to test with Stephane Sarrazin, but Toyota doesn't think now is a good time to join as there might be new regulations in 2017. This according to Akio Toyoda. Perhaps, Toyota knows something we don't. There might be a possibility that 2017 WRC regulations might allow for Hybrids. Akio Toyoda was also a guest on J Sports' coverage of Rallye Monte Carlo and there might have been some Toyota people there. TMG is still waiting for the approval from Japan to make a WRC comeback.

On a positive note, TMG is working on a GT-86 R3, so you can now have some nice 200 HP RWD action! All the RWD lovers should be happy about this.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 11 Mar 2014 08:24

M-Sport is rumored to be working on a new homologation for 2015. Also, R5 is quite fast and on the WRC level it is only 1 sec/mile slower than a WRCar at only 40 percent of the cost.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 31 Mar 2014 20:41

In other news, a Japanese automotive newspaper is saying that Mitsubishi is going to discontinue the Evo X by the end of this year. Apparently, this is due to decreasing demand and Mitsubishi does not seem to have a successor for the Evo. This is probably an end of an era in Rallying history which is why I am posting it in this thread. There will still be Evo N4 and R4 cars but those can compete until their respected homologations expire. I am sure they will still compete in national championships even after their homologations expire. Also, Mitsubishi wants to be an Eco focused brand and the Evo does not fit their green eco image. Though there may still be a Hybrid Evo like car, but that model may have been canned.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 10 Apr 2014 03:01

VW is lobbying the WRC commission for paddle shift gearboxes, as it would better fit in with their marketing interests, as VW road cars have paddle shift gearboxes. These paddle shift systems should not add much cost as there is already a hydraulic system in the car, though Pneumatic ones would work as well. Even R3 cars can have pneumatic flappy paddle gearboxes, but VW is thinking of debuting their 2015 WRCar by the end of this this season, so they can get a head start.

Toyota has been testing a Yaris WRC; however, Toyota is thinking of joining in 2017, but this car is being developed by Motorsport Italia along with TMG. Maybe this car could do some events with Motorsport Italia, and Toyota would focus on privateers, but I am not sure if Japan would allow it. Toyota is probably wanting a WRCar that is more relevant to their road car technologies such as hybrids. Maybe the 2017 WRcars could include hybrid tech or even an eTurbo that could use an electric motor to assist the turbo. Such a system would not require an Anti lag system which might not satisfy some fans out there.

Hyundai is going to use a joker homologation to improve the i20's engine and that could debut in Rally Finland.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby ChrisB » 03 Jun 2014 00:20

Interesting comments, rv65!

That Mitsubishi Lancer EvoXI (11) is going to be something hybrid is announced since about 2 years, then suddenly became quiet. But it was on the cards that the Evo was at the end of line. To be honest, even as a big rally fan, there is no market for such cars, and I am actually surprised Subaru just launched a new Impreza WRX. Maybe we should consider getting rid of 4x4?

I can't believe I am saying this, but VW is right about the paddle shifts. They are wrong about everything else. Well, that's me. I was about to conceede that VW has been doing good things, but now they come with that shoot out idea, which is just so not rally, and the arrogance stating they were the first team to win the WRC first try, which clearly they were not!

The Toyota thing I don't believe it until I have seen it. I would love to see Toyota in the WRC. But the Yaris is a bit too small and I guess they want hybrid, which I strongly believe is not for this sport.

Let alone your idea of electric driven turbo chargers to overcome the lag. I can see the thinking there, but ....

How shall I say, I was never against environment, I was never a hater of nature, I always loved turbos. Yes I love fast cars, but 10 years ago people were laughing about me when I said turbos are the big future, they are far more than making engines faster. Turbos make engines lighter, more efficient. Today every eco engine or diesel engine is turbo charged. And why is that? 1) turbos make engines more efficient and 2) turbos are driven by exhaust fumes. That means turbos are driven by waste energy! It's exhaust fumes, waste, we use that to boost the engines, how brilliant is that! And now we want to use electric motors to drive the turbos? Why use electricity if it works with waste energy? Electric driven turbos is so, so counter productive talking modern times and energy efficiency. But modern world, at least in Germany, you could drive the turbos with coal, as long as it says "BIO" on the boot with big grren letters, people will buy it, even for twice the price!

Electric motor supported turbos is like we use electrictity to spin those wind turbines, so they do not keep standing in the country side doing nothing, as is the case 70% of the time now....
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 05 Jun 2014 07:18

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hybrid_turbocharger

This is what I probably mean by electrically assisted turbo. It is an electric motor that can spin a turbo and it virtually eliminates lag. I think F1 has a similar tech in their fancy 1.6T v6's with KERS and all other technical stuff. Roadcars will eventually get this sort of tech, but it will take a while for it to be affordable and practical enough for a road car.

http://www.motorauthority.com/news/1092 ... 015-report

That new WRX is quite a nice car and the STi version is even better as in America it comes with a 2.5T boxer, but then again, all STi's in America have always had a 2.5T, even when the WRC was using 2.0T engines. Also, Mitsubishi said that the EVO X will continue on for at least the 2015 model year in America, and it is a nice car. Too bad the WRX has a CVT transmission which is super boring, though thankfully there is a Manual option. Banning 4x4 is not likely going to happen, and even then, Manufacturers will find a way to balloon costs. Also, it is cheaper for manufacturers to make WRcars then it is to make a rally car from a road car.

I have a video of the Yaris testing somewhere in Italy, just have not bothered to post it. I think this is being done to see if a WRC program is feasible. Toyota has said that Rallies have high media exposure and there have been reports of Toyota observing how rally is being done. There are job postings at TMG for people who have rally experience. I think TMG is going to focus on LeMans and maybe consider a WRC program in a few years.

Yves Matton had an idea for the WRC. He wants rallies have a shakedown and a Ceremonial start, though he proposes a couple of stages on that day (Maybe super specials). Friday and Saturday would be really long and Sunday would only be just 40km or maybe less. He thinks this will reduce the hotel costs and would entice new manufacturers. He did say that the current WRCars have ballooned in costs and wants the FiA to make sure that the 2017 regulations would keep the costs in line. I don't believe that as the current WRCars have fairly simple designs for certain things such as the 4x4 system. Only the 1.6T DI engine is the most advanced part. I think he wants R5 to be WRC standard. I could see R5 or a more high performance variant of that spec to be the 2017 WRcar, but 2017 is a year off. 2017 is when the FiA will launch a new WRCar spec.

Peugeot is not interested in the WRC and I can see that as they are getting a good return on investment with Rally Cross and Dakar. Bruno Famin said that a WRC team would cost around 40 mil/season and he thinks there is not enough money and even Peugeot had the money, would it be worth it.

I would like to maybe see 10 rallies or so, but really high quality endurance like events where a rally like GB would go all over the UK and maybe Scotland, or Rally Italy that could go throughout Italy. Though, I think Red Bull is doing a bad job in promoting WRC.

VW is probably going to quit the WRC one of these days, as they might find a new motorsport that they get interested and go from there. I would not be surprised if VW quits within the next few years.

Just some more thoughts.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby ChrisB » 24 Jun 2014 20:03

RV65, all makes a lot of sense.

And indeed, even VW recently announcing they continue till 2019 included does not mean that they actually continue! It means they have freedom of the management board to do so if they want, but it doesn't force them to. But I could well imagine if Capito does not get his stupid shoot out idea through and if he doesn't like the new WRCar regulations (Capito wants to keep current cars, all other teams want the R5 cars because they are cheaper), then they could well be out after 2016. What have they left to prove and why invest more money into a new car for a sport he doesn't seem to like....

Just why do you think WRCars are cheaper than anything road based? All team bosses bar Capito seem to think WRCars are too expensive, R5 is better. What made early groupA so expensive was the need of 5000 homologation special base cars. And everywhere I hear the dearest part of a WRCar is the conversion to 4x4.

I also don't agree with team managers saying reduced hotel costs would bring new manufacturers. If you see what cars, tyres etc cost, what is the hotel going to cost? This is like saying to can't travel 1000km to Sweden because you don't have money for a winter anorak! I'd say, just like you RV65, less rallies and make these longer, say you have 1 rally of 4 nights instead of 2 rallies of 2 nights, it's the same hotel cost but half the logistics cost!

Anyway, to the cars and cost, I really do think R5 is the way to go. It is in a way back to group4/A. I.e. if you follow chassis numbers as I do (still need a programmer to put them online) you will with the time find that Peugeot is doing two lots of 208 T16. I.e. Tsjoen in Ypres (and he will do Rallye Deutschland too) had 208 T16 chassis number 61. How come? No way there have been 61 208 T16s been built already? No, 13 have been built so far! But Peugeot gives you the option to make your own R5 car from a 208 GTI road car shell and a bag of parts. So no more M-Sport type monopoly, the dealer down the road can make you one! Peugeot plans to do 60 works built cars, the rest all come from a bag of spares. So chassis numbers 1-60 will be Peugeot Sport built cars, chassis numbers 61ff will be self made cars. Tsjoen's chassis 61 such is the first self made car.

Seems like a good way to do it, me thinks.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 07 Aug 2014 05:52

Now word is that 2017 regulations would be up to D segment and would have an open engine regulations, where engines are limited by fuel flow. This will force the manufacturers to develop ways to make creative engines for WRC, and it would also allow for Hybrid WRcars, which is something that Toyota wants. Hybrids would definitely increase the cost of WRC, and that would likely force privateers onto R5.

It is cheaper to use a body shell program for WRC as it can be more expensive to develop a special road car and than it is to make a current spec WRC. R&D is expensive, and it can cause the base model to have more high end parts as Subaru said that the WRX and STi models forced them to use more expensive WRX parts in the Impreza. Though of course, it can be done, but it's also more expensive to make a limited run of cars versus mass production. Though I know VW and others get away with it due to their scale, but maybe manufacturers don't like the idea of homologation specials. Also, a custom built car can have parts tailor maid for the WRC and not just road parts hacked together. I probably could explain this in more detail, but a way to keep costs down is to ban the homologation system and have an open market, though that would never happen.

I did hear that Tommi Makinen is working on either a GT 86 WRC or R5. Not sure how that will work due to the longitudinal layout and Toyota does not have an engine for R5, but they can use a 1.8 engine and make a 1.6 out of it. I know Skoda does this and M-Sport uses a 2.0 block for the Fiesta R5 engine. I hear that Akio Toyoda is involved, but TMG is also working on a Yaris RRC that could become a WRC. I still think Toyota is waiting on new regulations, and then that could allow them to introduce their Hybrids to WRC.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 03 Sep 2014 16:45

Makinen's car was apparently a one off Impreza N4 in a GT86 bodyshell. TMG is still working on their 2017 WRCar which is a bit of a mystery as to what the 2017 regulations will be. Manufacturers already know what the new regs are going to be, and December is when FiA will announce them.

Oh and the new Focus RS might have AWD and a 2.3T which will no longer have that Audi/Volvo sound and that FWD handling. It is likely to be sold in America and it could make a nice STi competitor, maybe even a R4 car, but I don't think Wilson wants it to compete with his Fiesta R5.

Existing N4's can now be called R4 next year. Not much is changing next year, and the powerstage has not been agreed upon, but order for days 1 and 2 would be driver championship order. The current number 1 spot would be the first on the road.

Petter Solberg might be driving for Citroen next year, and Hirvonen might consider retirement as he cannot find a good drive for next year. Wilson wants Tanak and Evans as his lineup, but he probably needs a good sponsor for development.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 03 Sep 2014 16:47

Split time relays from team to driver are banned.

RIP Bjorn Waldegaard
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby ChrisB » 04 Sep 2014 23:20

Hi RV65,

Thanks for your contribution! I really need to get something sorted out for the forum, but time....

I heard basically the same as you, only Petter for Citroen is news to me. And to be honest, I was so downbeat when Meeke crashed on Rallye deutschland. Exciting for Hyundai to win, or for anyone to stop that VW walkover, but Meeke had so much deserved it, he probably can never have such an easy win and he binned it for such a tiny mistake :-( I really think Citroen should keep Meeke! In Finland you have seen what this guy can still learn. It was his first event he did before in the DS3 WRC and suddenly he was bang on pace! In contrast I don't know what to think of Ostberg. Not crap, but not setting the world alight either. Meeke & Petter would make an interesting team at Citroen.

I have heard about the Focus RS too. To be honest if that is the case I would rather buy a 2nd hand Focus Mk2 RS than a brand new Focus Mk3 RS. I think a Focus Mk3 RS as R4 car is not possible as R4 has a max displacement of 2000cc?

RIP Björn! I made a small story for him. But I can't tell in words how much I admired him. In this database is now aroun 2700 drivers, each identified with a number for database reasons, and guess who is number 1 of 2700? Björn!
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 23 Oct 2014 05:03

You're right on the Focus RS being 2.3T and not able to qualify for N4, but maybe R-GT. For the first time, Ford will import the Focus RS to America. This new 2.3T is also being used in the Mustang which is also coming to Europe, so it should allow for economies of scale, and being able to use parts bin motors allows for a Focus RS to be sold here. It will have AWD, but Ford will import the US model from Europe rather than the US or Mexico.

Shoot out is dead, which is a good thing. I did hear that Hyundai is offering Ogier a large 13 million EUR salary for him to join their team. I think Ogier might be like Loeb, and focus on WRC by winning some titles, and then move on to some other form of motorsport, and/or do whatever he wants to do.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby ChrisB » 08 Nov 2014 00:55

It's a very good thing that the shoot out is dead.

I am not sure if Ogier is as loyal as Loeb. After all he wouldn't be where he is now without Citroen, yet he left Citroen - though in some curious circumstances. At the time Citroen was a bit angry about Ogier for understandable reasons, but now I bet Citroen is kicking their rear bumpers for letting him go!

Mind you, Ogier at Hyundai would have made next season far more interesting. The best driver in the worst car.... Not sure if it is fair to say the Hyundai is the worst car, but just compare what Neuville did last year with the Ford and now with the Hyundai. I think it is fair to say Ogier is the fastest driver while the Hyundai is nowhere near the VW. This combination Ogier-Hyundai would have more or less likely prevented one make to win everything, Because it just gets boring (and shoot out would not have changed that!).
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 08 Nov 2014 20:11

Well, it could change if it gets vetoed by the WMSC. WRC commission scrapped it, but FiA is a democracy (albeit a corrupt one) and can veto such decisions. Next WMSC might include the possible specs for 2017 WRCar, but definitely an announcement on how the Powerstage or qualifying stage is handled.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 15 Nov 2014 07:49

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/116716

I guess WRCars will become prototypes, if this becomes true. I think that the FiA want the next WRcars to be safer and in order to improve upon that, then production body shells can no longer be used. Maybe this is the reason why D segment cars are being proposed in the 2017 WRCar regulations, since it can allow for a monocoque. The only good thing about this is that it could allow for faster cars, which is either good or bad. When you combine this with a more open regulations with the powertrain by limiting fuel flow, maybe Group B could make a come back, albeit in a more restrained form.

http://www.quattroworld.com/audi-sport/ ... standards/

Explains the new Audi DTM monocoque.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 19 Nov 2014 21:05

Maybe we will have future WRCars have the co driver sit behind the driver, as it could improve safety. Safety is a huge issue in the WRC, as there drivers and co drivers getting killed in side impacts. A monocoque inside the car, could improve safety by offering some kind of crumple zone, as current cars don't have much in the way of side impact protection. Crumple zones in a WRCar, cannot be done with production shells. I would be interesting for tandem seating, but I am for it, if it allows safer, and faster rally cars. Maybe it will bring back the sedan WRCar, or use 5 door hatchbacks. Maybe C segment hatchbacks or D segment sedans. Maybe a C segment sedan could entice Subaru to make a comeback.
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Re: News and Rumors Open Thread

Postby rv65 » 24 Nov 2014 23:03

http://www.rallye-magazin.de/rallyes/wm ... index.html

Found that Mercedes or more or less AMG is interested in WRC with a CLA hatchback. I think it is a bit late for them to join the WRC, but they could wait until 2017, but who knows for sure. I cannot see Mercedes join as a factory team, but maybe AMG could with a rally car specialist either from Germany or Finland. Sounds like they could be working with a Finnish team or specialist working on a CLA WRC. It is currently under feasibility study, but it could work. What is more interesting is that they are the official vehicle of Rally Finland. Maybe a zero car of some kind. CLA45 could have made a good base for the old WRC 2.0T formula, but maybe not now.

Hyundai is planning a i20 R5, but not sure when it will be made available, as they are focusing on WRC for now. Maybe this was a development year for Hyundai as they have a new i20 WRC that might be a serious contender, but their driver lineup leaves a bit to be desired. I think Neuville could do better if he was in a different car like a VW or Ford.
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