Inside a Rally1 car: cooling the drivers

During the recent Rally Catalunya, we had the chance to look deep inside the cars, to fully understand how they are built and how some of the cooling issues are solved. One of the major issues this year was related to the presence of the exhaust pipe inside the car, affecting drivers’s comfort and health. This is our review of what we saw and what we learned.

Interior of a Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 during Rally Catalunya 2022

The main source of heat inside the cockpit in the current Rally1 cars generation is the exhaust pipe, which is located, in all three cars, on the right side of the car, just beside the codriver’s feet and seat. The reason why it is located there is the presence of the hybrid unit right behind the drivers, which forced engineers to relocate the exhaust in order to keep the hybrid unit cool.

Interior of a Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 showing the insulating material covering the exhaust pipe beside the codriver’s seat

Both Toyota and M-Sport have covered the exhaust pipe with insulating material to prevent heat leaks.

Interior of a Ford Puma Rally1 showing the insulating material covering the exhaust pipe beside the codriver’s seat

The design of the Hyundai is different, as it combines portions with insulating material (A) with portions with just a metallic-like cover (B), as shown in the image below.

Interior of a Hyundai i20 N Rally1 showing the exhaust pipe beside the codriver’s seat

During an event with relatively high ambient temperatures such as Rally Catalunya (with peaks of 28C), teams deployed some solutions to keep the inside temperature under acceptable values for the drivers. As seen in other events, M-Sport and Hyundai connected a corrugated pipe from the engine bay of the Ford Puma Rally1 to the feet of the codriver, to feed fresh air to compensate for the presence of the exhaust.

Interior of the Ford Puma Rally1, codriver’s side – note the cooling pipe sending fresh air from the engine bay to under the platform for codriver’s feet

Interior of the Hyundai i20 N Rally1, driver’s side – note the cooling pipe sending fresh air from the engine bay to codriver’s feet

In the case of Toyota, in Rally Catalunya all drivers (except Ogier/Veillas) incorporated an additional source of fresh air on both sides of the dashboard, which sent air to the side windows, rather than directly to the driver’s face.

 

Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 interior – note the side air nozzle

A similar solution was observed in the Hyundai i20 N Rally1 three weeks later in the Rally Japan, as shown in the image below, also used to demisting the windows.

T.Neuville/M.Wydaeghe, Hyundai i20N Rally1, Rally Japan 2022, 1st – image extracted from WRC All live

Also, drivers count on the fresh air provided through the roof scoop. In order to increase the amount of air entering the cockpit through the roof scoop, Toyota increased the intake area since Rally Safari 2022.

Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 roof scoop in 2022 Rally Catalunya (top) and 2022 Rallye Monte-Carlo (bottom)

Air captured by the roof scoop enters the cockpit through the nozzles shown in the images below.

Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 roof air inlet (from the roof scoop)

While the Toyota included four nozzles in the 2022 Rally Catalunya, the Ford Puma Rally1 just used two.

Ford Puma Rally1 roof air inlet (from the roof scoop)

Asked about the high temperatures inside the car during Saturday’s midday service at the Rally Catalunya (at 28ºC), Sebastién Ogier confirmed us that the issue appears to be under control, with the Toyota’s driver duo unaffected during the Catalan stages.

In some other events, those nozzles were connected to corrugated pipes that sent air to the rear of the car, possibly as a complement to the hybrid unit cooling system. But this will be the object of another article.

S.Ogier/B.Veillas, Toyota GR Yaris Rally, Rally Safari 2022, 4th – image extracted from WRC All Live

 

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2 thoughts on “Inside a Rally1 car: cooling the drivers

  • 2022-11-21 at 16:18
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    This is really the best website in the world.
    Thank you soo much for your information nad well detailed explications.
    Simone
    Italy

    Reply
    • 2022-11-21 at 21:32
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      Grazie mile, Simone. Really glad that you liked it! Thanks much for your belle parole!

      Reply

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