WRC needs to look at future electric switch – Sebastien Ogier

The World Rally Championship must consider going electric, be that fully like Formula E or a hybrid system like Formula 1, if it’s to remain relevant, according to reigning champion Sebastien Ogier. The future of electric power has been discussed previously in WRC, but there are currently no concrete plans to make the switch in the near future, unlike the FIA’s World RX championship, which had originally planned to go all-electric for 2020, before postponing the switch to 2021.

Ogier feels WRC must look at adapting to remain relevant, including looking at the current four-day format, which he believes is too long to retain interest, as well as addressing the rules around guest drivers, who he believes have an unfair advantage.

“We have had a great season but the discipline must evolve,” he told France’s Le Figaro. “It could be necessary to compact the current format. Three days is too long to successfully maintain public attention. It would [be better] to have two intense days with at least 300 km to preserve a notion of endurance. 

“There is also the eternal debate on the starting orders…the fact that we give so many advantages to the guest drivers is really damaging. The rules of the WRC are made in such a way that the ‘guests’ have a great advantage thanks to a late starting position and it is sometimes a little frustrating.

“We must not present artificial results to the public and create false competition. But this subject is thorny.”

A change Ogier feels is necessary, but one that might upset hardcore rallying fans, is that of electrification. 

The WRC should also look at electricity. We must move and quickly, take this turn that other disciplines have taken. 

It is not easy to set up but there are solutions and today this is the best way to attract new manufacturers while meeting the needs of our current society.”

Source: Motorsport Week