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Want to be the next Sebastien Loeb? This is the car you're going to need.
Sebastien Loeb and Citroen have claimed nine drivers' titles, eight constructors titles and 62 wins together in the World Rally Championship, placing both as the undisputed blinding force in the rally world. But with nothing left to prove (and his 38 years catching up to him), Loeb is retiring from the WRC at the end of this season. So who will take his place? You can, with the vehicle seen here. Well, almost. The latest vehicle developed by Citroen Racing is the DS3 RRC, a customer rally car that closely mirrors the DS3 WRC.
That's nothing to caugh at, considering the DS3 WRC is the car in which Loeb and Citroen took two of their championships together. The RRC version is made to comply with the FIA's new Regional Rally Car regulations that will replace the old S2000 formula for use in series like the WRC-2 (formerly known as S-WRC), the European Rally Championship and the Middle East Rally Championship. Like the WRC version, the DS3 RRC is based on Citroen's avant-garde hatchback, but fitted with competition-spec components. Those include a welded roll-cage, composite and steel body panels and upgraded brakes.
An hydraulic handbrake, adjustable suspension and 18-inch wheels for tarmac rallies or 15-inchers for snow and gravel round out the package. Power is provided by the 1.6-liter turbocharged direct-injection four-cylinder engine co-developed by PSA and BMW, but fitted with a 30mm flange to deliver 275 horsepower (limited from the WRC version's more powerful engine). Power is transmitted to all four wheels through a Sadev six-speed sequential gearbox with twin-disk Cerametallic clutch and auto-locking front and rear differentials. Though the DS3 RRC isn't exactly for sale, privateer rally teams can lease it at an as-yet undisclosed price.