The World Rallycross Championship has moved a step closer to its all-electric future by announcing that it has taken order of no fewer than 14 cars for next year’s premier class.
The rechristened RX1e category will feature a single platform, developed by Austrian firm Kreisel electric. It will have a twin-motor setup, delivering 500kW – the equivalent of 680bhp – to all four wheels and 880Nm (649 lb-ft) of torque.
Charging for the new cars will be managed by GCK Energy, an offshoot of Guerlain Chicherit’s GCK operation that formerly competed in World RX. GCK Energy will provide mobile charging points in containers that will be pre-charged in France ahead of events through solar panels and other green solutions.
So far, 14 of the new electric drivetrain kits have been reserved, with the identity of the prospective buyers set to be confirmed at a later date. And while all entries will run the same uniform powertrain, teams will still be able to use their own bodywork on their respective cars.
Should all remain committed, it would guarantee World RX will have grid sizes bigger than most events this season. Barring the season opener, which attracted 16 entries for RX1 (formerly Supercars), the category has fluctuated between 11 and 10 entries in the four rounds since.
“We are delighted to be heading full-speed into 2022 with an electrified World RX, said Arne Dirks, executive director of Rallycross Promoter.
“As promoter, we have a responsibility to nurture and grow this wonderful sport to ensure it continues to thrive for many generations to come – and teams and drivers have been enthusiastic in their support for our exciting new electric, more sustainable era.”
Dirks also confirmed that World RX is in talks with several manufacturers regarding the series’ electric future. After peaking with four factory-supported teams in 2017, works involvement has largely been absent from the world championship since.
World RX could be looking at altering its race format too, with the series describing the long-standing weekend schedule as being “under review”.
“Rallycross’ short, sharp races lend themselves perfectly to electric propulsion,” said Dirks. “With no need for energy conservation, drivers will have more power at their disposal than ever before, and they can exploit it to the max at every moment.
“Moving forward, we want to ensure that World RX remains the series that brings together the best drivers, the best teams, the best circuits and the best racing, and we have analyzed and assessed every single aspect to ensure that ‘Generation Alpha’ rallycross is the very best version of the sport it can possibly be.”