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Corsa-e Rally car - it lives!

You've seen the static pics, now here it is sideways in testing

By Matt Bird / Friday, December 13, 2019

If this Vauxhall Corsa looks familiar, then it's because the rally car has been seen before - yes, two appearances for a Corsa on PH in a year. No Christmas presents for us. But having been confirmed a couple of months back, the Corsa-e Rally is now undergoing durability testing ahead of entries for the e-Rally Cup opening this weekend.

Now, if we covered every pre-season test of a rally car, there wouldn't be much else on the newsfeed, but the Corsa is notable for being the first battery electric rally car. So there's no prior knowledge or historic data to go from; Opel - in charge of testing in Germany - has to learn from scratch.

"There is no experience of an electric rally car that we could turn to", said Opel Motorsport Director Jorg Schott, with a focus on sim work initially. With real life testing now under way, he says the aim for the Corsa is to "match or even exceed the high standards of its petrol-engine predecessor, the Opel Adam Cup". While power is lower at just the 136hp, the torque of 192lb ft is higher; weight will probably be greater, the centre of gravity lower. And if it all sounds a bit meek for a rally car, watch this Adam onboard and say it doesn't look fun - dare you...

Next stop for the pair of Corsa prototypes is simulated stages from January to optimise set up, and finessing of the three drive modes: competition for full power, rain for a slippery surface-optimised torque curve, and eco for between stages. The car will be ready for the 2020/21 ADAC Opel e-Rally Cup, entries for which open on Sunday. Orders for the car are being taken now...

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