It’s been on the horizon for quite a bit of time, but now it’s official – Rallycross goes electric.
The FIA World Motorsport Council has approved the application from BSI/IMG, who is behind the FIA World Rallycross Championship, to transform the Rallycross sport into an electric series from 2020.
The plan is to run the FIA Electric World Rallycross Championship, as the most prestigious title in the Rallycross sport.
The aim is to continue 12-14 events, in a similar format to now.
Each team can enter a maximum of two cars – just like today. Some of the teams are bypassing this rules by entering a third car under a slightly different team name.
They will run for two World Championship titles – one of drivers and one for manufacturers. There will also be a Teams Trophy for the private teams.
The cars will be four-wheel drive, just like today. They will have two electric motors, delivering an output of 500 kW, with the same battery and same chassis.
The driveline has to follow the same basics as in the Formula E Championship. Williams will deliver the batteries while ORECA will deliver the chassis.
Private teams can get a car model homologated too, so it’s not just reserved to the car manufacturers.
There has been talk for a long time, that World RX would turn towards electric cars, and that is the reason why Peugeot, Volkswagen and Audi have put so much money into the sport.
It is however a bit unclear if they had expected the cars to be standard chassis and standard battery, since that will limit their development and innovations massively. It’s not exactly clear from the World Motorsport Council, if it’s only the basic chassis that has to be the same, with the team being able to put on their own bodywork – or if it will be 15-20-25 totally equal cars, with different sponsors on, like we know from Formula E.
There hasn’t been any comment from either BSI/IMG nor the World RX teams, so we don’t know what they think about the rules.
It is a fact, that the budgets in the World RX have been skyrocketing during the last 4 seasons. The FIA has tried to stop that for this season, by putting restrictions on the engines and bodywork ahead of this season.
We will have to see the coming months, how the teams will handle the rules – if they are ready for the electric wave, or if they put the brakes on and wants to keep the current open chassis and driveline regulations.