Pending the final release of the 2012 WRC standings, the Citroën DS3 WRC is a two-time World Rally Championship champion, which just solidifies the fact that it knows a thing or two about racing. On the heels of this championship, Citroën is set to debut yet another racecar, but this time around, it is for private owners only.
This new model, dubbed the Citroën DS3 RRC, is designed to run at rally levels just below the WRC, like the European Rally Championship (ERC), WRC-2, Middle East Rally Championship (MERC) or other national championships. Citroën was very careful in its homologation of this model to make 100 percent certain it wasn’t stepping on its own tailpipe.
So can this baby-brother version of the championship-winning Citroën DS3 WRC be held up to the same relative standard as its big brother?
Click past the jump to read all about the Citroën DS3 RRC and find out.
The Citroën DS3 RRC’s body is made up of steel and composite fiber to help keep its weight as low as possible. In fact, it only tips the scales at 1,200 kg (2,645 lbs) at minimum, and can range upward depending on which class of racing you are heading into. The DS3 RRC isn’t overly large either. Actually, it is downright small, measuring in at just 3,948 mm (155.4 inches) long X 1,820 mm (71.6 inches) wide. It rides on a 2,461 mm (96.9-inch) wheelbase and boasts a stout 1,618 mm (63.7-inch) front and rear track.
On the outside, the DS3 WRC and DS3 RRC look nearly identical, save for a few regulatory changes. The RRC model boasts slightly smaller intakes on the front bumper and the rear spoiler is in compliance with S2000 regulations – Citroën doesn’t get into what exactly changes with the S2000 compliance though.
At the corners, you will get a set of 18-by-8-inch wheels for tarmac use and 15-by-7-inch wheels for use in gravel and snow. Both rims sets are wrapped up in Michelin rubber.
The press photo car is, of course, wrapped up in corporate livery, but we’re sure it comes in a neutral color that you can customize to your team’s liking. The coolest thing about these WRC and RRC cars is the fact that they look so very close to their street counterparts. The only places that the RRC model really varies are in its wide-body backside, roof-mounted scoop, smaller mirrors, ground effects, and rear wing. Short of those variances, if you were to strip off the livery and raise the suspension slightly, you couldn’t tell this model from a road-going DS3.
|Length|| 3,948 mm (155.4 inches) |
|Width|| 1,820 mm (71.6 inches) |
|Track (Front and Rear)|| 1,618 mm (63.7-inch) |
|Minimum Weight|| 1,200 kg (2,645 lbs) |
|Wheels|| 18-by-8 Inches (Tarmac) / 15-by-7 Inches (Gravel and Snow) |
Citroën didn’t provide any information on the interior of the DS3 RRC, except that it does come with a roll cage. Short of that, we assume that it comes with a steering wheel, a racing seat, a multi-point harness, and basic gauges.
Engine and Drivetrain
Under the DS3 RRC’s hood sits a familiar 1.6-liter turbocharged engine with direct injection. To comply with RRC requirements, Citroën installed a slightly heavier flywheel than the WRC model has and a 33 mm booster flange – 3 mm smaller than that on the WRC model – into the DS2 RRC. This drops the RRC to a less, but still acceptable, 275 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 350 Nm (258 pound-feet) of torque at 3,250 rpm.
The power transfers through ceramic-metallic twin-disc clutch into a 6-speed manual transmission. This transmission feeds power to all four wheels via a front and rear auto-locking, mechanical differential. There, as expected, is no mention of the Citroën’s 0-to-60 time of top speed, but we would assume it to get to 60 mph in around 4.5 seconds and hit a top speed of roughly 150 mph.
Engine and Drivetrain Specifications
|Engine|| 1.6-Liter, 4-Cylinder Turbocharged W/ Direct Injection |
|Horsepower|| 275 Horsepower at 6,000 rpm |
|Torque|| 350 Nm (258 Pound-Feet) of Torque at 3,250 rpm |
|Transmission|| 6-Speed Manual |
|Drive|| All-Wheel Drive |
|Acceleration (0-60 mph)|| Unreleased (TopSpeed Est. 4.5 Seconds) |
|Top Speed|| Unreleased (TopSpeed Est. 150 mph) |
Suspension and Braking
In addition to the rims and tires mentioned earlier, the Citroën DS3 RRC stays glued to the road via MacPherson struts on the front and rear, which are three-way adjustable.
The braking system is another big shift between the WRC and RRC models, as tarmac front discs have been lowered from 355 mm (13.97 inches) on the WRC model to 350 mm (13.77 inches) on this model. In its gravel setup, the Citroën DS3 RRC comes with 300 mm (11.81 inches) front rotors. Squeezing these discs is a pair of 4-piston calipers that feature a water-cooling system. On the rear end, the Citroën DS3 RRC features 300 mm (11.81-inch) discs squeezed by 4-piston calipers.
The Citroën DS3 RRC also features adjustable brake distribution via a cabin-mounted interface. This allows you to fine-tune the brake system on the fly.
|Suspension (Front and Rear)|| 3-way adjustable MacPherson struts |
|Front Brakes (Tarmac)|| 350 mm (13.77-Inch) Disc W/ 4-Piston Calipers |
|Front Brakes (Gravel)|| 300 mm (11.81-Inch) Disc W/ 4-Piston Calipers |
|Rear Brakes|| 300 mm (11.81-Inch) Disc W/ 4-Piston Calipers |
If you don’t love the technology that goes into building a rally car, you need to check your pulse. They are a complete balance of power, weight savings, traction, and handling, resulting in absolute perfection – when the build is properly executed. In this case, it appears as if Citroën has smacked the nail cleanly on the head with a 20-pound sledge, as the DS3 RRC seem to be – on paper – an awesome performer and poised to make a good run in the RRC class, given it gets leased to a good team.
Unfortunately, Citroën didn’t let us know what its lease price was, or how much involvement it has during the lease time.
Nice power from small-displacement
Only 1,200 kg
No performance specs to speak of
No pricing means it is likely very expensive
The safety equipment may be up to you
- Citroën Racing proudly presents DS3 WRC-inspired DS3 Regional Rally Car (RRC) for private drivers
- RRC products can be used in championships below WRC level, including ERC and some national championships
- Visually different, with slight changes under the bonnet, the RRC otherwise maintains the key strengths of the DS3 WRC
Continuing to develop its line-up of rally cars, Citroën Racing is proud to present the DS3 RRC. Faithfully derived from the DS3 WRC, the double World Rally Championship-winning car*, this version has been designed for private drivers and is suitable for use in a wide variety of competitions (WRC-2, ERC, MERC, etc.).
Having come into force at the start of 2011, the new FIA World Rally Cars regulations allow manufacturers to produce a Regional Rally Car (RRC) variant of their models. Set to gradually replace cars in the Super 2000 category, these products are intended for use in the championships below the level of the WRC: WRC- 2 (formerly S-WRC), European Rally Championship (ERC), Middle East Rally Championship (MERC), some national championships and so on.
The World Rally Championship-winning car in 2011 and 2012*, the Citroën DS3 WRC is now available in an RRC version. Visually, the two models are different since the regulations are more restrictive as regards aerodynamic features on the RRC. The bumper intakes are smaller and the rear spoiler complies with the S2000 standards.
Under the bonnet, the 1.6-litre turbocharged direct-injection engine has been slightly modified, with a specific engine flywheel and a 30mm booster flange (compared with 33mm on the WRC). Maximum power output therefore drops to 275bhp. The other significant change concerns the brakes in tarmac configuration: the diameter of the discs has been reduced from 355 to 350mm and the water-cooling system has been removed.
Aside from these changes, the Citroën DS3 RRC maintains all the strengths of its big sister: reinforced body with welded, multi-point roll cage offering a high level of safety and resilience, MacPherson suspensions and Citroën Racing adjustable shock absorbers, six-speed sequential gearbox, etc.
Developed over the summer during test sessions on gravel and tarmac, the Citroën DS3 RRC is now available for leasing from Citroën Racing Technologies. Its modest running costs and versatility make it an intermediary option between the DS3 R3 and the DS3 WRC.
* Subject to publication of the official results by the FIA.
Structure Reinforced body with welded, multi-point roll cage
Bodywork Steel and composite fibre
Type Citroën Racing - 1.6-litre turbocharged direct injection engine, with a 30mm
Bore x stroke 82x75.5mm
Maximum power 275bhp at 6,000rpm
Maximum torque 350Nm at 3,250rpm
Distribution Double overhead camshaft valve train driven by timing belt
4 valves per cylinder
Fuel feed Direct injection controlled by Magneti Marelli SRP-HP unit
Type Cerametallic twin-disk
Type Four-wheel drive
Gearbox Sadev six-speed sequential - Manual control
Differential Front and rear mechanical, auto-locking
Front Ventilated disks, 350mm (tarmac) and 300mm (gravel)
Water-cooled 4-piston callipers (tarmac)
Rear 300mm - 4-piston callipers
Distribution Adjustable from cockpit
Handbrake Hydraulic control
Shock absorbers Citroën Racing three-way adjustable shock absorbers
(low- and high-speed compression and rebound)
Type Hydraulic power-assisted steering
Tarmac 8x18’’ wheels - Michelin tyres
Gravel and snow 7x15’’ wheels - Michelin tyres
DIMENSIONS, WEIGHT AND CAPACITIES
Length / Width 3,948mm / 1,820mm
Wheel base 2,461mm
Track 1,618mm (front and rear)
Fuel tank 75 litres
Weight 1,200kg minimum / 1,350kg with driver pairing (regulations)