The Paris Motor Show will be the venue for the formal unveiling of the final version of Citroën's C4 WRC rally car, the successor to the company's dominant Xsara, the car which propelled Sebastien Loeb to World Rally Championship stardom, and Citroën to three manufacturers championships (with Loeb's results in 2006 likely to make it four in a row).

The C4 WRC will replace the Xsara when Citroën re-enters the WRC with its factory team in 2007, led once again by Loeb. Like the Xsara, the C4 WRC features four-wheel drive, a 315 hp 2-liter turbocharged engine and a six-speed transverse-mounted semi-automatic gearbox. Front and rear differentials are mechanical, while the center diff is electronically controlled. The C4 WRC is larger than the Xsara, providing a larger, safer compartment for the driver and navigator. Unlike the last factory-run Xsara, the new C4 is more limited by the new WRC rules in the area of electronic driver aids, and major subsystems (engine, gearbox, differentials, shocks) must last longer before replacement.

More pics after the jump.

[Source: Citroën Sport]