From the 1924 Croisière Noire to the 2014 World Touring Car Championship, at Citroën we have a long history of applying our values of creativity and technology to motorsport.
Every day in our dedicated motorsport department, based in Satory, Versailles, nearly 200 people work to apply Créative Technologie to the world of motor racing.
Since 2000, the Citroën Racing plant in Satory, Versailles, has been the backbone of our winning machine.
The site on Allée des Marronniers covers 15,000 m2, excluding the adjacent Val d'Or test track. The plant, which includes workshops, laboratories, warehouse, assembly shop and an exhibition hall, houses all our motorsport expertise.
Follow the process involved in creating a Citroën Racing motorsport vehicle…
From overall design to the smallest detail, over 4,000 plans are produced on CAD workstations during the development of a new car. We use technology developed by the PSA Group to calculate the resistance of materials and fluid mechanics.
The team in the plastics laboratory create a quarter scale model of each car to refine the design. We carry out wind-tunnel tests using the quarter scale model before commiting to producing a full-size one. It's here that cars like the Citroën DS3 WRC are born.
The bodywork laboratory handles chassis construction. Starting with a basic shell, the technicians cut, adjust and weld the tubes of the roll cage, transmission tunnel, suspension anchoring points and stiffeners.
This is where the intricate parts for our racing engines are created. For the Citroën DS3 WRC, built for the 2011 World Rally Championship season, 100% of the engine parts were designed and built here. The cylinder block was cut directly from a solid block of aluminium. Assembling and testing an engine takes around two weeks.
Powertrain components are developed and produced in two on-site laboratories, one dedicated to suspension, steering and brakes and the other to gearboxes and transmission. Between them these two lab teams create some of the most crucial components for our motorsport cars.
The electricity and electronics laboratory is responsible for producing wiring harnesses. It takes about seven weeks to assemble a harness, each of which includes several thousand connection points.
Metrology is the science of measurement. Whether we've created them in-house or commissioned them from subcontractors, all the components for our motorsport vehicles have to pass the scrutiny of our metrology team and their 3D measuring units.
Completed parts are stored in warehouse until they are needed in the assembly shop. This area is divided into two main parts, one dedicated to producing competition vehicles and the other to building test vehicles. This is where all the hard work comes together.
Designing, building, testing and refining a competition car is just the start. Here's a quick glimpse of the logistics involved in Citroën Racing's participation in the WRC and WTCC:
- 25 events across the two championships and around 15 practice sessions.
- 40 staff at each race, on average, and 20 people per practice session, including five logistics specialists and 15 people to handle the equipment.
- Transporting all our equipment involves…
- And, to get our team where they need to be, per year takes…