Volkswagen became only the fifth manufacturer to lock out the podium at the WRC Monte Carlo Rally when Ogier, Latvala and Mikkelsen scored a dominant 1-2-3 finish in the Mediterranean principality this weekend.
VW Polo R Wrc
Not unlike some other motor racing disciplines, the World Rally Championship tends to be ruled by dynasties. The late 1980s were dominated by Lancia, Toyota won a succession of titles in the early 90s, Mitsubishi and Subaru traded top spots in the late 90s and Citroën dominated from 2003 through 2012. But these days its all about Volkswagen.
Mastering an impression is hard enough – even if you're trying to do a person with highly recognizable tendencies, like Christopher Walken or Al Pacino – but getting the sound of vehicle just right by using nothing but your own vocal anatomy is on a whole different level. That's what makes people like Daniel Jovanov so impressive. The former Australia's Got Talent contestant doesn't just do a generic car or truck, he has honed his skill down to specific models.
For the tenth year in a row, a Frenchmen named Sébastien has been named the champion of the World Rally Championship – only it's probably not Sébastien you were expecting. Dethroning Sébastien Loeb from his WRC reign is 29-year-old Sébastien Ogier (shown above, at right) and his Volkswagen Polo R WRC.
Volkswagen announced earlier this year that it would be entering the World Rally Championship starting in 2013 with the Polo R, and we got our first glimpse of the race car here in Frankfurt. While it's easy to see the similarities to the road version, the Polo R WRC has been transformed into an all-out rally car with widened fenders, a fully stripped and caged interior, and plenty of carbon fiber on the body. Under the hood is a race-prepped version of Volkswagen's 1.6-liter STI engine producin