Volkswagen has unveiled its new challenger for the 2015 World Rally
Championship. The season kicks off on January 22 with the iconic Rally Monte
The works team from Wolfsburg, Germany has its sights set firmly on another successful defense of its titles in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) with the 2015 Volkswagen Polo R WRC rally car. Volkswagen completed a clean sweep of all the World Championship titles when the Polo R WRC made its debut in 2013, before repeating this impressive feat last season. Continuity is the key to the driving line-up for 2015: double world champions Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F) and team-mates Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) and Andreas Mikkelsen/Ola Fløene (N/N) will roll down the starting ramp and head onto the first special stage of the year for Volkswagen at the legendary Rally Monte Carlo.
"The new Polo R WRC has undergone intense further development, both on the inside and the outside," said Dr. Heinz-Jakob Neusser, Volkswagen Board Member for Technical Development.
"I am very optimistic that the new car will get off to just as good a start as its predecessor. We have done a lot of testing and we drivers have worked very closely with the engineers. We put a lot of effort into developing the new shift paddle, which represents real progress. We are looking forward to the new season. It will be exciting to see how we fare against the other teams. The tests have gone well so far, and our engineers have done a good job. The Polo R WRC is even better than it was before," added Sébastien Ogier.
Polo R WRC's Exterior: Blue, Dark Blue and White
The most striking change to the 2015 Volkswagen Polo R WRC rally car is its exterior. The white has given way to dark-blue. White and light-blue stripes see the dark-blue front merge into the white rear, which features a towering new rear wing. Also integrated in the new design are Volkswagen's other partners in the World Rally Championship: Red Bull, lubricant partner Castrol, Volkswagen Financial Services, tire partner Michelin, chassis and clutch specialist ZF Sachs, and supplier OMP.
Technical Advances for 2015 WRC Season
A hydraulically activated gearbox, which is operated via a shift paddle on the steering column, represents the biggest innovation on the 311-horsepower (315 PS) 2015 Polo R WRC rally car. Furthermore, three quarters of last year's components were checked and many of them optimized, with the aim of making everything "simpler, lighter, and stronger".
2015 Season Calendar - FIA World Rally Championship (WRC)
22/01-25/01/2015 Rally Monte Carlo
12/02-15/02/2015 Rally Sweden
05/03-08/03/2015 Rally Mexico
23/04-26/04/2015 Rally Argentina
21/05-24/05/2015 Rally Portugal
11/06-14/06/2015 Rally Italy
02/07-05/07/2015 Rally Poland
30/07-02/08/2015 Rally Finland
20/08-23/08/2015 Rally Germany
10/09-13/09/2015 Rally Australia
01/10-04/10/2015 Rally France
22/10-25/10/2015 Rally Spain
12/11-15/11/2015 Rally Great Britain