The World Rally Championship has taken a significant step towards retaining hybrid and sustainable fuel from 2027 onwards.
Peter Thul, who is the senior director for sport at WRC Promoter, admitted full electric is not currently a viable option.
Right now the WRC is still looking to confirm its current hybrid supply deal for 2025, and Thul talked longer-term into the next homologation cycle.
“At the moment, discussion of future regulations is absolutely important and everybody who is in the championship at the moment agrees it has to be a mix of hybrid and sustainable fuel – in whichever combination it will be,” he said.
Asked for his thoughts on hydrogen, Thul said: “Hydrogen would be fantastic, but even Toyota who is pioneering this side, is saying it needs some time.”
And on the EV question, he added: “Going full electric, at the moment, with the technology available is no option.
“I was at the Munich auto show and some [road car] manufacturers are thinking to go more for the sustainable fuel and this makes us confident. The problem is that the automotive world is not clear.
“We still believe rallying should have a component of internal combustion. Porsche [in sports cars] and Formula 1 is going in this direction… even in 2030 I think you will see half the car park is still [having] internal combustion engines.
“We believe this is the only chance to keep the rallying as it is.”
These plans will be discussed by teams and the FIA, but Thul and his WRC Promoter colleagues were at pains to point out that technical regulations remain the domain of world motorsport’s governing body.