M-Sport has started testing its 2017 WRC machine. Currently running the prototype version of Fiesta WRC, the new machine is running on 2017 engine and mechanical parts such as suspension, drivetrain and transmission. The new aero upgrades will follow in the upcoming tests. On the exterior the only change that can be noticed is, mock-up rear diffuser to replicate the new chassis.
M-Sport team principal Malcom Wilson himself was behind the wheel for the first test at M-Sports's Greystroke forest facility. After the tests Wilson said, "I'm very, very excited by what I found with the car. I've tended to drive most of our new cars, just to get a feeling for what they're doing. From that test, I would know if there was something wrong and there's nobody who can put more pressure on the guys to put it right."
The actual 2017 car's debut is said to be in September for Europe tests. Ford is yet to confirm the launch date of the road going version of the car on which the 2017 machine is based. Wilson's son Matthew Wilson will be testing the car for four days a week, running for three weeks.
Malcom Wilson further said, "It's going to be a very expensive car [to develop and build], but it's beautiful. There's so much workmanship in it, it looks absolutely lovely. The guys have taken a really big step with this car. There's nothing wrong with the current car, but there have been areas to improve on and we've done that and more with this one. We've been doing some endurance running in Greystoke, but we're also doing set-up work while also building a bank of data."
Fiesta is the last out of five 2017 WRC machines to hit the rally stages. VW has already been testing the Polo WRC since a year, Citroen has begun its C3 development from April. Also Toyota Yaris WRC has been recently tested. Hyundai is also testing the three door mule car.
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