Citroen's new C3 rally car looks brilliant | Top Gear
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Citroen's new C3 rally car looks brilliant

The C3 WRC concept car proves 2017 rallies will look good. Now for the hot hatch, Citroen

Published: 20 Sep 2016

Miss the days of vibrant little Citroen hot hatchbacks? This new C3 concept is a sign they could be on their way back.

It is the Citroen C3 WRC concept car, and it previews a couple of things. Most pertinently, it’s what we can expect Citroen’s 2017 world rally challenger to look like. But it also – if you squint a bit – shows us what the new C3 hatchback could look like if it downed a few protein shakes to become a proper Ford Fiesta ST and Peugeot 208 GTI rival. We really hope it does.

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Back to the car itself. It’s longer and wider than a standard C3, at 4.2m and 1.9m respectively, thanks to its exceedingly aggressive motorsport makeover.

Power is a spritely 380bhp, provided by the 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine that meets 2017’s WRC regulations, which allow larger turbo restrictors, freeing up a whopping 80bhp.

It also sees a 25kg drop in minimum weight, so the C3 WRC should weigh around 1175kg before driver and co-drivers are inserted, making it lighter than the DS3 WRC it supersedes.

The WRC rulebook allows greater aerodynamic expression, too, hence that rather ginormous rear wing. Ginormous is what you want when it comes to wings, don’t forget. And just check out its front spoiler. One to watch when driving on public roads between stages, we’d say.

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Citroen says we can expect changes between now and 2017. “Very close the finalised car, the C3 WRC concept car hints at the intentions of the Citroen style centre without giving everything away about its final form,” says the official blurb.

But they’d be mad to make them anything more than minor tweaks. Correct us below if we’re wrong, but it looks fantastic, right? Now to convince them to make one for the road. Forget the Fiesta ST, in fact. Keep the AWD and 380bhp and go gunning for the Ford Focus RS

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