Speedworks to run facelifted Avensis for 2017 BTCC season

Speedworks Motorsport has revealed that it will run a facelifted version of the Toyota Avensis for the 2017 BTCC season.

The new car is one of those currently testing overseas, with Speedworks having elected to head to Portugal in search of more favourable conditions in which to continue with preperations for the new season.

Work over the winter has focused on aerodynamics, cooling and damping, revised bodywork from bumper to boot lid and a distinctive new front as Tom Ingram seeks to improve on what was a strong 2016 campaign for the former Ginetta champion.

“This is the biggest single overhaul the Avensis has ever had, and we are confident that we have taken significant strides in every respect,” team boss Christian Dick said. “We decided towards the end of 2016 which direction we wanted to pursue and that gave us a head start on a lot of the groundwork. The boys have put in an immense effort over the winter, and what they have produced is a real testament to the strength-in-depth and design expertise inside this team. The car looks quite different from every angle, and we’re all extremely excited to see how it performs when it hits the track.

“The Avensis still has plenty of untapped potential, and our objective was to keep it fresh by bringing it right up-to-date. We carefully evaluated every aspect and identified quite a few areas in which we could make gains. The BTCC is so tight and intensely competitive that you have to carry on continuously developing because if you stand still, you will go backwards very quickly.

“2016 was by far our best season to-date in the championship, but we are certainly not going to rest on our laurels and we are all eager to take another step forward in 2017. By the time we get to Brands Hatch for the first round, we intend to be every bit as strong if not stronger than we were twelve months ago.

“As a team, it is imperative that we are absolutely on top of our game throughout. We have to be gunning for the Independents’ crown this year – and if we can do that, there is no reason why we can’t also be in with a shot at the overall title going into the final weekend…”