The BP Ford Abu Dhabi World Rally Team has confirmed that it will debut the latest evolution of the record-breaking Focus RS WRC car on the Rallye Deutschland next week.
Mikko Hirvonen and Jari-Matti Latvala will both use the 2008 spec car in Germany, as will Khalid Al Qassimi, who will compete in the 'third' car not nominated to score manufacturers' points.
"The car that won the manufacturers' title in the World Rally Championship for the past two seasons, and recently claimed a landmark 100th consecutive points finish, has been upgraded ahead of the first asphalt round of the series since January," read a statement to the media.
"The 2008-version of the Focus RS includes front style changes as well as engine improvements. Style changes to the grill area reflect the looks of the recently-previewed Focus RS road car.
"A new turbo and crankshaft will also increase the range of power available."
Jari-Matti Latvala, who has five Rallye Deutschland starts to his name, conducted a successful pre-event test this week and he was happy with his preparations ahead of the Trier-based round.
"I had two really good days, covering 230km on the first day and 200km on the next. It was 30ºC and clear blue skies so I hope the rally is like that," said the Finn, who will be out to bounce back following his error on day 1 of his home event in Finland last weekend.
"I learned a lot about the tyres and I believe I have a better set-up for this rally than the last asphalt event in Monte Carlo.
"When the series switches from one surface to another, and especially after a long time away from asphalt, it's important to have the chance of a good test with plenty of kilometres."