FIA insists hybrid move won't hurt WRC costs or competitiveness

The World Rally Championship will not be any less competitive or cost effective when it moves into its hybrid era in 2022, insists FIA rally director Yves Matton

Further details of the next generation of World Rally Cars will be revealed following next week's meeting of the World Motor Sport Council.

Costs were a key point of contention when Formula 1 first moved to hybrid technology, and every championship in that era so far has been won by the Mercedes team.

The WRC is currently enjoying a three-way title fight featuring drivers from Citroen, Toyota and Hyundai.

"The target is to stay at the same cost [as the current cars]," Matton said.

"By making some technical economies on some other technical parts of the car we can do this, but we have not defined these other parts.

"For the manufacturers, we try to make the technical potential return on investment as cost effective as possible.

"The intention is to try to have a cost-effective hybrid solution because we want to stay in a similar car budget, we don't want the general cost for the manufacturers to increase like we have seen in some other disciplines.

"And it's the same idea for the competition and the performance, the idea is to keep this the same.

"We want to keep what we have for the moment which means that all of the manufacturers are quite close to the other ones - and this allows a manufacturer to jump into the championship and be quite fast and at the right level in the same way Toyota did when it joined the championship.

"We would like to see [new manufacturers] coming in and [potentially] being champions after two years, this is what we have and we would like to see this continue."

Matton would not be drawn on specific details of the principles of the new cars - news on a single supplier for the battery and motor is expected after the WMSC meeting next Friday.

The future of the current generation World Rally Car is also under discussion, with the FIA keen to avoid a repeat of failure of the WRC Trophy - a 2017-introduced class for drivers of 2016 World Rally Cars.

Only three drivers put together a programme of any significance, with the title taken by Greek driver Jourdan Serderidis (pictured above).

"We have to see if we open a category to still use the current cars," Matton said.

"I have to say the last attempt at this was not a big success, but we have to study it.

"But for the moment it's not the priority."

The WRC Trophy was dropped at the end of 2017.

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