VW is going to begin competing again in WRC for the 2013 season, as they have introduced plans to build an all-wheel drive Polo R race car. For those of you who are not familiar with the acronym WRC it stands for World Rally Championship and is sanctioned by the FIA governing body. You have also proven that you live in North America as the WRC series is hugely popular in Europe and other worldly places that wish they were still European like the Province of Quebec.
For those of you who are not familiar with the sport, I believe the goal is to have as many people possible crowd around the track with the goal being to stand as close to the cars as possible without getting run over. Sounds simple right? Well to spice it up a little the driver of the cars as only given a map and a co-pilot to help them figure out which way to go. Then they place the race in the middle of the woods and have the cars battle against the clock by putting them on the slipperiest surfaces like snow/ice, mud and loose gravel. I read online (so it must be true) that the spectators are given flags, whistles, and cow bells to try and distract the drivers. If a driver does hit someone standing right on the side of the rally course they will be given a penalty which is seconds being added to their total time. If you think you’re interested in participating in an even I recommend checking out this official video introduction video and count the crashes (click here). Good luck, update your Will and Kiss your Loved ones before you leave the house. You’ll find me at home drinking a cool Pint of amber ale with all of my arms and legs attached.
VW feels that their expertise in developing powerful small displacement turbo charged engines will allow them to be competitive right out of the gate. In the VW press release they state that “The centerpiece of the Volkswagen Polo R WRC will be a 1.6-litre TSI engine with direct injection and turbo-charging.” The engine is said to be able to output around 300 horsepower and a maximum torque of about 260 pound feet. They are going to design a new sequential gearbox and 4 wheel drive system, in addition to full safety cage and an aerodynamic outer skin. I can only hope that some of this technology mostly the engine will find its self in the 7th generation of the GTI.