Tag Archives: WRC

Mini’s WRC Entry for the 2011 Season – Paris

After the earlier unvailing of Citroen DS3 WRC contender Mini have entered the fold with their 1.6 Turbo Charged Engine to compete in next years WRC, There is no mention of power output but expect it to be around 300ps to be competitive.

The MINI WRC, powered by a 1.6-litre, four-cylinder Di turbo-charged engine, recently received a baptism of fire, acquitting itself well during initial testing at Prodrive’s rally track. The company commenced development of the car in 2009, and a concept of the MINI WRC will be displayed in Paris. “The Paris Motor Show is the perfect stage, on which to launch our MINI WRC,” says Ian Robertson, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, responsible for Sales and Marketing. “The response to our announcement that MINI will return to the world of rallying next year was very positive. The FIA World Rally Championship is the pinnacle of rallying, making it the ideal platform for demonstrating the competitive spirit of our brand. The development of the car is running on schedule, and the preparations for the world championship are in full swing.

The 2011 World Rally Championship will see the new MINI WRC contesting in six of 13 scheduled rounds, with MINI competing in the full 2012 season. In addition, Prodrive plans to make available customer versions to independent teams for use in the championship.

Rallying is hardly unchartered territory for MINI. In the past this popular motor sporting genre decisively shaped the image of the brand. The MINI Cooper S became a true legend through its numerous victories on Rally Monte Carlo. The European Rally Championship, too, saw MINI notch up serial successes. “MINI can look back on a successful tradition in rallying,” says Dr WolfgangArmbrecht, Senior Vice President Brand Management MINI. “The interest in motorsport among the present generation of MINI customers is massive. The WRC provides an excellent communications platform for the MINI Countryman,upon which the MINI WRC is based.”

Prodrive, an experienced motorsport operation, was chosen as the partner in the quest to continue MINI’s success story. The company, founded by David Richards, is viewed as one of the most respected and successful in rallying. “This project is a truly passionate opportunity,” believes Richards. “MINI is a cult brand which left a lasting impression during its previous motorsport campaigns. We are both extremely happy and proud to be on board as a partner when MINI returns to rallying. We aim to use 2011 as a preparatory year, amassing experience in order to ensure we are fully competitive from the start of the following season. But let’s not underestimate the task ahead of us nor the stiff competition we will face on the way, however our target is firmly set on winning the World Championship title again with MINI.”

Prodrive was founded in 1984, and has established itself as one of motorsport’s leading independent teams. Currently employing over 500 staff, the company is based in Banbury (GB). Among other successes, Prodrive has to date won six World Rally Championships, five British Touring Car titles, and scored three class victories in France’s classic Le Mans 24 Hours.
The heart of the MINI WRC is the BMW Motorsport-developed 1.6 litre, fourcylinder Di turbo-charged engine which can be deployed not only in the WRC, but also in other championships running to the FIA’s Super2000 regulations. The power transmission takes place via an Xtrac 6-speed, sequential gearbox. For its outings on the rally stages, the MINI Countryman chassis has been fitted with a roll cage developed by Prodrive, which exceeds the strict safety

CITROËN DS3 WRC


Pursuing its involvement in top-class road racing, Citroën Racing has unveiled its new DS3 WRC, due to take part in the 2011 season of the World Rally Championship. Citroën DS3 WRC complies with the brand new regulations drawn up the FIA and is packed full of Créative Technologie.

The compact, dynamic and aggressive design of this ‘little racer’ immediately catches the eye – it has clearly been designed with winning in mind with its widened wings, redesigned bumpers and aerodynamic features. Built using the production body shell, the chassis has undergone many modifications to adapt the four-wheel drive transmission and the McPherson-strut suspension system. The safety of the driver pair is guaranteed by a roll cage, which enhances the sturdiness of the car.

Compared with the previous generation of World Rally Cars, the 2011 regulations have led to a genuine revolution under the bonnet. Citroën DS3 WRC is powered by a four-cylinder, 1600cc turbocharged direct injection engine. A first at this level of motorsport, the use of a direct injection engine opens up new possibilities for the development of racing engines, especially in terms of fuel consumption. Designed and built from start to finish by Citroën Racing, this engine develops a healthy 300bhp.

The bodywork has been extensively tested in the windtunnel by Citroën and the panels a mixture of polycarbonate and filled with foam to improve crash protection properties and also weight reduction.

Built using the DS3 production body shell, the DS3 WRC chassis includes a roll cage made of over 40 metres of steel tubing. The lower part has undergone several significant structural modifications:
Upper attachment points added for the rear McPherson-strut suspension
Optimisation of the lower suspension attachment points
Integration of the transmission tunnel and the rear differential
Lateral reinforcements added level with the body sills

Since DS3 is more compact than C4 WRC, Citroën Racing’s engineers worked on improving the position of each component so as to achieve the best possible balance between the car’s centres of inertia and centres of gravity.

ENGINE: THE DIRECT INJECTION REVOLUTION

Since ground link system regulations have only undergone minor modifications compared to the previous generation of World Rally Cars, design office engineers were able to make the most of their experience, deploying solutions that have proven successful on C4 WRC.

The McPherson-strut front and rear suspension systems have latitude that enables the position of the attachment points to be optimised. In order to keep development and running costs down, it is now only possible to certify one type of pivot. DS3 WRC uses the same part at the front and the rear, on both the gravel and tarmac versions. The struts are connected using an interface part that varies according to the version. Just like its big sister, the C4 WRC, the four-way adjustable shock absorbers (low- and high-speed compression and rebound) have been designed and built by Citroën Racing.

Slightly smaller than on C4 WRC in order to comply with the 2011 regulations, the 355mm (tarmac) and 300mm (gravel) brake disks at the front, and the 300mm brake disks at the rear, come with four-piston callipers. A water-cooling system improves the efficiency of the brakes on tarmac.

TRANSMISSION: FOUR-WHEEL DRIVE FOR ALL SURFACES

With special stages on icy Swedish roads, rough gravel tracks in Greece and smooth Catalan tarmac, DS3 WRC will need to cope with both varied and demanding road surfaces. Although it is without any electronic assistance, the four-wheel drive transmission has been designed to maximise performance in all conditions.

The 2011 regulations require constructors to select a supplier that has met the specifications drawn up by the FIA. They set the weight and price of each element. Citroën Racing has signed a technical partnership agreement with the French company, Sadev.

The six-speed sequential gearbox and the front differential are integrated in an aluminium housing. These are connected to the rear differential via a longitudinal drive shaft. The central differential is now prohibited, but a system may be used to disconnect the rear wheels when using the hydraulic hand brake. Semi-automatic, steering wheel-mounted controls are also outlawed, and have been replaced with a totally manual gearshift lever.

As with the engine, the lifespan of the gearbox increases with the 2011 sporting regulations. At one point in the season, teams must use two gearbox/rear axle assemblies for three rallies.

DS3 WRC is set to make its official competitive debut at Rally Sweden (10-13 February), the first round of the 2011 FIA World Rally Championship.

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

CHASSIS
Structure Reinforced body with weleded, multi-point roll cage
Bodywork Steel and composite fibre

ENGINE
Type Citroën Racing – 1.6-litre turbocharged direct injection engine
Bore x stroke 82×75.5mm
Capacity 1,598cc
Maximum power 300bhp at 6,000rpm
Maximum torque 350Nm at 3,250rpm
Specific output 188bhp/litre
Ditribution Double overhead camshaft valve train driven by timing belt
4 valves per cylinder
Fuel feed Direct injection controlled by Magneti Marelli SRP-HP unit

TRANSMISSION
Type Four-wheel drive
Gearbox Sadev six-speed sequential
Control Manual
Differential Front and rear mechanical, auto-locking

BRAKES
Front Ventilated disks, 355mm (tarmac) and 300mm (gravel)
Water-cooled 4-piston callipers (tarmac)
Rear Ventilated disks, 300mm
4-piston callipers
Distribution Adjustable from cockpit
Handbrake Hydraulic control

SUSPENSION
Front McPherson type
Rear McPherson type
Shock absorbers Citroën Racing four-way adjustable shock absorbers
(low- and high-speed compression and rebound)

WHEELS
Tarmac 8×18’’ wheels
Gravel and snow 7×15’’ wheels

DIMENSIONS, WEIGHT AND CAPACITIES
Length 3,948mm
Width 1,820mm
Wheel base 2,461mm
Track 1,618mm (front and rear)
Fuel tank 75 litres
Weight 1,200kg with driver pairing (regulations)

Citroën C4 WRC meets Kimi Räikkönen

Kimi Räikkönen got his first date with the Citroën C4 WRC earlier this week, at a private gravel test track close to the team’s Satory workshops. This initial run was to allow the Finn to start getting used to the car that he will drive in the 2010 FIA World Rally Championship.

With only a few weeks left before this year’s World Rally Championship season gets underway in Sweden on 12th February.

The 2007 Formula 1 World Champion travelled to Paris to see Citroën Racing’s facilities for himself and to test the Citroën C4 WRC on a gravel test track within the Satory complex. Having covered around 50 kilometres, the latest Citroën Junior Team driver appreciated the chance to introduce himself with his new car.

Kimi Räikkönen’s first competitive drive will be on 28th January when he competes in the Arctic Lapland Rally as preparaion for the forthcoming Swedish Rally, the first round of the 2010 World Rally Championship.