Hy­brids or elec­tric power “at least five years away” for World Rally Cham­pi­onship

Motor Sport News - - Rally News -

Al­ter­na­tive tech­nol­ogy in the World Rally Cham­pi­onship re­mains at least five years away, ac­cord­ing to FIA rally di­rec­tor Jarmo Ma­ho­nen.

The FIA has be­gun in­ves­ti­gat­ing ways to in­cor­po­rate hy­brid or elec­tric cars in the cham­pi­onship, but the gov­ern­ing body is keen to of­fer man­u­fac­tur­ers five years’ sta­bil­ity be­fore ma­jor reg­u­la­tory up­heaval is in­tro­duced.

“We have had in­ter­nal meet­ings about this,” Ma­ho­nen told MN. “Now we have to start the dis­cus­sions about the pow­er­train: is it elec­tric? What is it? We need to talk to the right peo­ple from the man­u­fac­tur­ers. The big com­pa­nies have their strate­gies and we need to see how can we fit in with these?

“But right now, we need sta­bil­ity, there will be no elec­tric cars for five years.”

Ma­ho­nen said he had watched with in­ter­est as al­ter­na­tive tech­nol­ogy ar­rived in rallycross, but pointed out that the for­mat of short races leant it­self per­fectly to RX.

“I have seen the dis­cus­sions in RX, but it’s much eas­ier for them,” he said. “Ral­ly­ing is, for sure, one of the hard­est dis­ci­plines to be­come elec­tric or hy­brid. One op­tion could be to use elec­tric­ity on the road sec­tions be­tween the stages and then use the en­gine in the stages. We need to talk about this, but ev­ery­thing can be achieved if we all sit around the ta­ble.”

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