Marcus Gronholm in talks with Hyundai for 2018 World RX Effort

by Phil Kinch

Double World Rally Champion Marcus Gronholm has revealed that he is in talks with current WRC Manufacturer Hyundai to run a two car GRX Team in the 2018 FIA World Rallycross Championship.

The plan involves Gronholm’s own Rallycross outfit GRX teaming up with successful FIA European Super1600 Rallycross Championship team SET Promotion to run two 2016-based i20 cars with his son and current World RX driver Niclas Gronholm behind the wheel of one of the cars.

GRX plans to run two 2016 i20 Supercars in the 2018 World RX season. Credit: Hyundai Motorsport

Gronholm Sr. explains that a decision on the move by Hyundai Motorsport is close.

“We have discussed with them, but the final decision will be soon,” Gronholm told Motorsport News.
“I hope everything goes together, it’s not yet there and time is running quickly, we are in late November already.”

The idea behind the tie-up between the two parties would be that this would eventually become a works effort, however if the deal is to come together for 2018, then this first season would be as a private squad with some support from the South Korean Manufacturer.

Niclas Gronholm qualified for his first ever World RX Supercar Final in Germany. Credit: GRX/McKlein

Hyundai Motorsport Team Principal Michel Nandan confirmed that talks are taking place.

“We have spoken about rallycross and we have talked to Marcus,” he told Motorsport News“We are looking at some ways to do something next season with him.”

Marcus Gronholm went on to explain that there has been a lot of interest in his plans for GRX to run Hyundai’s in the 2018 FIA World Rallycross Championship from drivers who want to join the effort, however this would require drivers to bring funding.

Niclas Gronholm drove a 2014 M-Sport built Ford Fiesta during the 2017 season. Credit: IMG / FIA World RX

“There are people who have contacted us, quite many actually,” said Gronholm Sr.“Of course this is the time that people are running around.”

Should the plan to run the Hyundai’s not come to fruition for next year, then Gronholm also confirmed that the team would continue to run the M-Sport built Ford Fiesta that his son Niclas campaigned this year. However there would be an upgraded engine installed in the former Ken Block machine should that be the case.

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