Defending world rallycross champion Johan Kristofferson will get a new ride this year in the shape of the Volkswagen Polo R Supercar, marking Wolfsburg’s fourth year of involvement in the FIA World Rallycross Championship. As with last year, PSRX Volkswagen Sweden – owned by Petter Solberg, who will also be racing – is the works team, but it will now be supported by the Volkswagen R division for the first time.

The Polo R Supercar is still based on the previous Polo three-door (the latest model is five-door only), but the dummy head- and tail lights sport new graphics that give the car a closer resemblance to the new sixth-generation Polo. Volkswagen says that the biggest changes can be found at the front of the car, where the air intakes have been redesigned for better aerodynamics, making the car more efficient.

Also fitted is a new rear wing that creates more downforce and provides greater freedom in setting up the car. The mechanicals have received further development as well, making it better suited to the series’ short, close racing. There’s still a 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine making 570 hp, along with all-wheel drive.

“Volkswagen R has always drawn inspiration and passion from motor racing,” said Volkswagen R GmbH managing director Jost Capito. “We will now actively build on these qualities in close cooperation with our colleagues at Volkswagen Motorsport and the PSRX team. The FIA World Rallycross Championship will be really exciting and we are looking forward to working with our partners.”

Volkswagen Motorsport director Sven Smeets said, “There is no question about it, the new season promises to be very exciting. The opposition will do everything in their power to take our title. Our goal is obviously to provide Johan and Petter with a good car, which will allow them to challenge for the world title. I am confident that we will achieve this, and that the new partnership with Volkswagen R will give us even more power.”