A month after announcing its formal entry
into the 2014 FIA World Touring Car Championship, Citroen has shown off the car it has decided to use to next year, the new C-Elysee model.
The car will be powered by the same engine currently used in its Citroen DS3 WRC model, which is a front-wheel drive, six speed, 1.6 litre direct injection turbocharged engine - producing around 380bhp, it is claimed. 18 inch wheels and wider aerodynamic wing and front splitter complete the look.
As well as revealing the car - coming weeks after various teaser images were released - Citroen CEO, Frederic Banzet, explained why they had selected the new C-Elysee.
“Choosing the C-Elysee as the basis for our WTCC car reflects very clearly our determination to use racing as an active means of supporting our commercial development,” he stated.
“With rounds in Latin America, Morocco, China and Russia, the WTCC race calendar is genuinely global, and it will be a real advantage to run a C-Elysee, a key driver of our growth, in front of large crowds of enthusiastic motorsport fans.”
Citroen's technical director, Xavier Mestelan-Pinon, believes that the car is the perfect choice for WTCC competition.
“From a strictly technical perspective, the choice of a three-box saloon body was ideal in terms of aerodynamics. C-Elysee was therefore the perfect choice,” he added. “Apart from this aspect, we were able to install the various components fairly easily. Insofar as this is our first track racing car, we constantly had to ask ourselves questions about the relevance of our choices, but that's what makes this a particularly exciting challenge.”
Citroen have also indicated that they would like a former Chevrolet driver to partner incoming debutant, Sebastien Loeb, and with Alain Menu, Rob Huff and Yvan Muller all not being tied to racing contracts so far for next year, it means the French company should have a dream line-up.
Adding to these comments made at the last round in Porto, Citroen have said that they could use former F1 race winner, Robert Kubica in some way too, but for now, he is '150 per cent committed' to rallying.
Citroen have been testing the car in recent weeks and will now continue to do so, with the first 'public display' of the car coming at the Frankfurt International Motor Show, which runs from September 12-22.
by Dexter Fielding