If you are a PlayStation 3 enthusiast with superior Gran Turismo 5 skills and approximately $2 million lying around in the bank, then Citroen are the people you want to warm up to. Last year, at the Paris Motor Show, crowds went wild as the GT by Citroen concept car was revealed to the world. A car so slick, luxurious and sporty, that what PlayStation fans could only dream about was designed, built and displayed. A virtual vehicle had become reality, and this year Citroen have stepped it up by revealing that this magnificent vehicle was going into production for six vehicles only.
The joint venture between Citroen and Polyphony Digital has created great excitement in the auto industry and motoring fans, who are thrilled that a production version is being made of the GT by Citroen and cannot wait to see it. The task of bringing a realistic and workable design of the vehicle seen in the game to life fell to Takumi Yamamoto. Yamamoto, a Japanese designer on the Style Citroen design team, created a vehicle that is as close to the version seen on the game as possible, leading to a glamorous and dangerous looking vehicle that screams power. Many features of the vehicles and accessories seen in the games created by Polyphony Digital, have made their way from the game to the real world, and the Japanese company is also the leader in developing racing simulations.
The exact specifications on the vehicle have not been released as yet, but it is known that the GT by Citroen will weigh 1 400 kilograms and will have a power output of 780bhp. Exactly what will be going under the hood to produce the power of this magnificent production vehicle is still to be decided, but one thing is certain, and that is that the unveiling of the GT by Citroen at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September is going to be a massive crowd pleaser and draw to the show. With only six limited additions up for grabs, many motoring collectors will truly be disappointed if they don’t get their hands on one of these GTs.
With their eyes on Corona Rally Mexico, to take place from July 9th to 12th on the outskirts of Guanajuato, Spain has stepped up to the plate by sending a first-rate racing team. International drivers Xavi Pons and Dani Sola will proudly bear the Spanish flag on their cars, their having teamed up for the Rally of Nations.
This decision makes Spain one of the favorite countries to win in Mexico, given the quality of both drivers, who have participated in previous editions of the Corona Rally Mexico, Dani Sola actually winning the 2004 WRC in the production cars category.
With victories in Germany and Corsica in the production category, a dirt rally championship in Spain in 2008 and the experience of having been an official WRC driver for Subaru, Citroën and OMV, Xavi Pons, like his fellow countryman, will be a name to watch out for in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX.
“I’m thrilled to represent Spain alongside Dani Sola. I have done the Mexican circuit three times and it is, without a doubt, one of my favorites among those I’ve experienced. I am in good shape and I hope to do well. I would like to congratulate the organizers on this project; the Rally of Nations is a great idea,” said Pons.
Dani Sola already has one world championship behind him in the WRC Junior category, as well as the asphalt rally of 2006 and the dirt rally of 2007 in Spain, and has experience as an official driver of the Mitsubishi team in 2004 and Ford BP in 2005, credentials which will make the Catalan a tough act to beat during the Corona Rally Mexico. Dani enjoys great appeal among Mexican motor racing enthusiasts and has friends there that will certainly be out rooting for him every day.
“It is great to go back to Mexico, for me it’s one of the best rally events in the world. The fans are wonderful and the organization is perfect. Having a Rally of Nations is a great idea and I’m convinced that it will be a success. Once again, Mexico will be one of the major players in world motorsport,” commented the Spanish driver by phone.
The level of competition in the Rally of Nations will surely become more and more interesting over the next few days as other teams are announced, including Corona Team Finland and other powerful duos.
The annual Rally d’Italia Sardegna often attracts a lot of attention as it winds its way along the narrow, twisted mountain roads that surround the town of Porto Cervo. These sandy, bumpy roads provide the perfect track for rally races as they mercilessly challenge the driver’s skill and talent. In fact the Rally d’Italia Sardegna is so tough that is has earned a place in the World Rally Championship schedule.
The Rally d’Italia Sardegna replaced the asphalt roads of the Rallye Sanremo in the World Rally Championship schedule from 2004 and has proved to be a successful leg of the race ever since. The World Rally Championship takes place in 25 different countries each year, and the Rally d’Italia Sardegna forms a very important part of this massive global race which also features countries such as France, Spain, Finland, Great Britain, Belgium, Sweden, Ireland, Germany, Luxemburg, Romania, Turkey and Japan. There are 59 crews listed on the entry list for this year’s race and Italy is the sixth race in the championship schedule. The 2008 Rally d’Italia Sardegna will be taking place from the 15th to the 18th of May on the Liscia Ruja and will be broadcast live for racing fans around the world to view. The various drivers will be represented by a total of seven manufacturers, and racing fans can expect to see Citroen, Ford, Subaru, Suzuki, Renault, Mitsubishi and Rover.
Test racing for this great leg of the World Rally Championship is already underway and the results show that the main event should be a good one. Mikko Hirvonen is currently the World Rally Championship leader, and he and team-mate Jani Matti Latvala have already finished testing their Ford Focus vehicles for the race. Hirvonen is confident that they are well-prepared for the race and is looking forward to the Rally d’ Italia Sardegna. He noted that the Italian circuit is one of his favorite rallies and he’d like to finish first after claiming second place last year. Hirvonen is one of the most likely winners of this year’s Rally d’ Italia Sardegna. To find out who takes the trophy, however, you will just have to make sure that you either attend the race or stay glued to your television for a live-broadcast of the race.