Elfyn Evans is set to take on a full WRC2 campaign for the 2016 FIA World Rally Championship behind the wheel of an M-Sport Ford Fiesta R5.
The young Welshman is no stranger to the main support category on the world stage having taken part in five rallies in 2013, including a victory at Wales Rally GB.
Evans will be driving the latest development of the teams Fiesta R5 which has undergone more than six months of improvements including updates to the cylinder head, pistons, inlet and exhaust cam, exhaust manifold as well as a new clutch/flywheel.
The result of these updates brings an extra 32bhp at 4500rpm and 56Nm of torque at 4000rpm, which is the single best development step in any M-Sport engine. There are further changes to come with chassis related upgrades planned for March.
Rallye Monte-Carlo will mark the first competitive outing for Evans behind the the R5 since spending the last two season in the main WRC category.
“This programme will allow me to continue my development as I gain further experience of the FIA World Rally Championship events” said Evans.
“I know the Ford Fiesta R5 to be a competitive car and the upgrades look extremely promising. I’m looking forward to getting back behind the wheel and proving the extent of M-Sport’s development.
Joining evans will be fellow Welshman and co-driver Craig Parry as Dan Barritt moves on to new projects.
“I would also like to thank Dan [Barritt] for what has been three great years of co-operation. His knowledge and experience has taught me a great deal and I am extremely grateful for all he has done.
“Now it’s time to start a new chapter with a new co-driver and I am looking forward to working with Craig as we look to achieve our shared goals and ambitions.”
M-Sport Managing Director, Malcolm Wilson OBE added, “We were keen to keep Elfyn in the team and this programme will allow him to continue his progression and gain further experience away from the pressures of the top flight.
“Launching the new evolution Fiesta R5, we were eager to have an experienced driver behind the wheel and I believe that Elfyn will do a great job of proving the extent of our upgrades.
“The Fiesta R5 was already a highly competitive package – winning the FIA European Rally Championship last year – and these upgrades should see Elfyn keep our latest Fiesta at the top of the WRC 2 standings.”