Hyundai Motorsport has appointed François-Xavier (FX) Demaison to a newly created technical director role.
- Demaison will start role on 1st June
- He will work closely with World Rally Championship (WRC) programme manager Christian Loriaux on the car’s development
- Focus on shaping Hyundai’s future motorsport programme, with help from Hyundai Motorsport president Sean Kim and team principal Cyril Abiteboul
Context: Demaison is a significant appointment for Hyundai, bringing 26 years of experience in the motorsport industry. He has previously worked with both Subaru and Volkswagen in WRC, with his time at the latter reaping notable success following four consecutive drivers’ and manufacturers’ titles between 2013 and 2016.
The Frenchman joins Hyundai after a brief stint as technical director at the Williams under Jost Capito, who also left the Formula One team under peculiar circumstances.
Comment: Demaison said: “I am tremendously excited to start this new role with Hyundai Motorsport. It is clear that Hyundai has fantastic potential in the motorsport realm, both in existing endeavours and also looking to future initiatives, especially electric motorsport programmes.
“My remit is to enhance and grow the capabilities of the Hyundai Motorsport operation to be one of the best globally. I relish this challenge and look forward to working with the personnel who have already achieved great things in WRC and their customer racing programmes.”
Consequence: Hyundai’s main focus in motorsport is WRC, with additional entries across touring cars and the lower categories of rallying. So it’s notable that Demaison’s appointment has a particular focus on shaping Hyundai’s future motorsport programme.
Could the South Korean manufacturer be weighing up a possible entry to Formula One? With Cyril Abiteboul, who served as managing director of the Renault Formula One team between 2014 and 2020, and Demaison’s recent experience in the global motorsport series, Hyundai is certainly well positioned to consider its options.