FIA World Rally Championship Differentials are pretty easy to understand once you know how they work. Torque is distributed from a driveshaft and split to the driven wheels, transferring energy to the road. But when it comes to top-level rally car differentials, it gets a whole lot more complicated. Because modern WRC cars are all-wheel drive, they have a center differential that splits torque from the engine to the front and the rear. Simple enough, right? Well, there's a little more to it than that. Advertisement - Continue Reading Below You see, in order to get through a corner fastest, drivers need a varying amount of lock between the front and rear differentials, which means the center diff is constantly locking and unlocking depending on how much throttle and steering angle the driver is applying. For example, if a driver has the wheel pointed straight and their foot to the floor, the onboard computer determines they need as much traction as possible, so it fully locks the … [Read more...] about How a World Rally Car’s Enormously Complex Center Differential Works
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Getty ImagesJoan Cros/NurPhoto As Hyundai World Rally Team's Michel Nandan explains, over fifty meters of unalloyed carbon steel tubes are built into every WRC roll cage. What's more, the FIA put G-force sensors into all cars as well, which engage lights for the marshals in case the driver and co-driver sustain an impact of more than 15 Gs. This way, they can immediately request a helicopter without having to guess the severity of the situation. Advertisement - Continue Reading Below Yet 2017's most significant safety upgrade was the introduction of side-impact foam, which is built into the doors and the fenders to absorb most of the energy that used to make its way to internal organs. Since then, many drivers have talked about how happy they are with this material, including Jari-Matti Latvala, Thierry Neuville, and Kris Meeke, who recently got fired by Citroën for testing the foam... perhaps a bit too often. Getty ImagesQuality Sport Images Current WRC cars are faster … [Read more...] about World Rally Cars Are Filled With Foam
► We take a spin in a 286bhp rally Fabia ► Fresh from winning the 2017 WRC 2 championship► What does the future hold for Skoda Motorsport?What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you read the words Skoda Fabia? A cheap, practical supermini that’s still fighting to change the average car buyer’s view of the Skoda brand? Or maybe that TV ad in 2006 where a team of bakers crafted a scale model Fabia out of cake? Well, for those who’ve taken a keen interest in motorsport over the last few years, the humble Skoda resembles something of a championship-winning machine. This year alone, its all-wheel drive rally-prepped alter ego – the Fabia R5 – has taken the WRC 2 (World Rally Championship 2), Asia Pacific, South American, African and European ERC Junior U28 Rally titles, not to mention another 14 national crowns around the world. Of the 13 rallies during the WRC 2 season, 10 were won by crews in … [Read more...] about We ride shotgun in Skoda’s championship-winning Fabia R5 rally car
Volkswagen may have concluded its top-flight works rally programme at the end of the 2016 World Rally Championship season, but it hasn’t left the rally scene entirely. Enter the Polo GTI R5 rally car, a model which will be sold to private rally teams and is eligible for entry into the WRC2 category this year. Volkswagen Motorsport, the company’s arm for racing endeavours, plans for an initial run of 15 Polo GTI R5 cars, though all of these have already been spoken for. Most of these are going to Volkswagen importers who plan to enter the R5s into their respective national championships, says technical director of Volkswagen Motorsport François-Xavier Demaison. The Polo GTI R5 is slated for its competitive debut on home ground in August this year, at the Rallye Deutschland round of the World Rally Championship. “By then, we’ll have been able to put the car through its paces – the next time will be in the UK and then in the snow of Scandinavia in … [Read more...] about Volkswagen unveils Polo GTI R5 customer rally car
The 2018 World Rally Championship season blasts off on the oldest and most prestigious event of the year: Rally Monte-Carlo from Jan. 25-28, with plenty of snow expected over the French Alps.Last year, private team M-Sport caused a sensation by winning both the driver’s and manufacturers’ titles against the might of the factory squads, as the sport introduced new technical regulations to make the cars faster and more spectacular.On the back of that, M-Sport has secured increased technical involvement from Ford Performance and the services of five-time champion Sebastien Ogier for yet another season. But as experienced team principal Malcolm Wilson says: “Last year was the most competitive season I’ve seen in 30 years. This year, it’s going to be even closer, as everyone has improved.”There are only a few tweaks in the driver lineups across the board: Elfyn Evans steps up to become No. 2 to Ogier at Ford, with Finland’s Teemu Suninen as third … [Read more...] about 2018 World Rally Championship preview: Can anyone catch Sebastien Ogier, Ford?