Volkswagen rules out dropping third WRC car amid emissions scandal

Volkswagen team principal Jost Capito says cutting down to a two-car World Rally Championship effort to save money would be untenable despite the pressure of the company's emissions scandal

Volkswagen rules out dropping third WRC car amid emissions scandal

The crisis in VW's road car arm has triggered speculation about the future of its ultra-successful WRC programme.

But Capito dismissed the latest wave of rumours that it would be cutting down from three to two Polo R WRCs next season.

"If I had to save money, I would save it somewhere else other than on the third car," said Capito.

"For me, the third car is vital to win the championship and we have contracts with three drivers.

"You can never know what happens the next day, but there is no absolutely no indication that we have to do anything that is reducing our competitiveness."

VW currently fields world champion Sebastien Ogier, Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen.

Capito acknowledged VW's current situation put the spotlight on costs, but said this was nothing new for the motorsport department.

"The discussion's about making sure we never waste any money, which we don't," he said.

"It's not like we have an open budget, we have a proper budget and we know what we spend the money for.

"Being cost-effective does make it harder to save money, but if people are aware that you don't waste money then they don't come and ask you to save more money."

While VW is unlikely to reduce its team to three cars, the chances of current Skoda driver Esapekka Lappi being installed in a fourth Polo next year also look to have waned.

DAVID EVANS: Why Lappi is a proper Flying Finn

"There is no chance of any more drivers or cars for us next year, but I think Lappi is ready for a world rally car no matter what that is," said Capito.

"We are following his progress closely and he is definitely one of the next drivers we would take."

He added that Volkswagen would not be running any semi-works cars or selling Polos to private teams in the future.

"We are a factory team," he said. "We are here to win."

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