Craig Breenis in the Gap region of France today as he tests his Ford Puma Rally1 Hybrid for the final time ahead of next week’s Monte Carlo Rally.
The World Rally Championship will undergo major environmental changes this year when new technical regulations drive the series towards a more sustainable future.
Plug-in hybrid-powered Rally1 cars designed around an upgraded safety cell chassis, 100 per cent fossil-free fuel and sustainable energy supplies are key to a commitment to a greener future from the FIA, motorsport’s governing body, and WRC Promoter.
Manufacturers have been racing against the clock for months to develop and test their new hybrid challengers, in which a 100kW electric motor coupled to a 3.9kWh battery complements a competition-proven 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine.
The package raises peak performance levels to more than 500hp whilst also reducing harmful emissions.
But the day of reckoning gets ever closer. The 100th edition of Rallye Monte Carlo gets underway next Thursday night.
Today’s test is Breen’s last chance to fine-tune their new Ford Puma and spells the start of a very busy period of the Waterford man and his Kerry co-driver.
On Saturday they will attend the official launch of the 2022 WRC season.
For the first time, the WRC’s dramatic new-generation Rally1 cars from the three manufacturer teams will be together in Salzburg’s innovative Hangar-7 museum as the series’ new-look sustainable future is unveiled.
New liveries will be revealed, big-name drivers and co-drivers from Toyota Gazoo Racing, Hyundai Motorsport and, of course M-Sport Ford will talk about their hopes for 2022 and team management will discuss season strategies.
By Monday, they will be back in the South of France for the Monte Carlo recce.
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