Timo Rautiainen, vice president of the FIA Rally Commission, gave glimpses of FIA policies this week in an interview with www.yle.fi website.
The sudden withdrawal by Citroen Racing from the WRC has clearly brought the plans for the future of the WRC into focus, much of which is related to the introduction of hybrid power units in 2022.
The intention is that hybrid cars will only use electric power on liaison sections through urban areas, and that normal power will be used on special stages.
It is the intention, for cost saving reasons, to provide only control specification components for the hybrid systems.
The departure of Citroen Racing from the WRC is leading to the prospect of a reduction of entries of top level professional cars, and the thought that private teams might again be registered for the WRC.
The 2017-spec WRC cars have not been able to be used by privateer teams.
While the FIA is striving to reduce the costs of running 2022-generation WRC cars, there is a wish to facilitate entries from private teams, which have been virtually excluded from the WRC by the cost of running 2017 generation cars.
Private teams would be able to compete on selected WRC events.
Already there are suggestions that Citroen Racing could release some of their 2019 WRC cars for rental. Details are still being discussed.
Other factors characterise the 2022 car rules. The next generation cars do not have to be derived from series production cars, but instead they must be visually recognisable as established mass production cars, but not necessarily built to scale.
Enlarging or reduction in dimensions will be permitted, up to specific sizes, so long as the finished product still looks externally like a standard production based car.
If the formula does not attract enough active manufacturers, the FIA still has the opportunity to make WRC2 the premier formula, which would open up the top level of the sport to private teams.
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