World Rally Championship: end of the hybrid era from 2025

Starting from the next edition, the Rally1 cars will no longer be equipped with hybrid engines. The FIA ​​World Council took this decision to try to contain costs and try to bring new manufacturers back to the WRC

Nico Patrizi

February 29 – 3.17pm – MILAN

Unexpected about-face in the World Rally Championship. The FIA ​​World Council decided, in its last meeting, to put end to the era of hybrid engines in the WRC starting from next season. The cars Rally1 they will therefore return to having a “conventional” engine from 2025, while remaining the reference category for the World Championship.


The FIA ​​decided on this sensational turnaround after an in-depth investigation among professionals, fans and manufacturers. The new engine was welcomed by all in a negative wayalso due to the vertiginous growth in costs supported by the teams. A situation that precluded the possible entry of new builders in the WRC, restricting the games for victory to a very small group of competitors. A clue to the change in direction had already arrived at the beginning of the season, with the admission to the start of the Rally1 cars with “classic” engines, albeit transparent for the points zone.


The Rally1 category, as mentioned, will not be “retired” for the benefit of the increasingly explosive class Rally2this year enhanced by the debut of Toyota GR Yaris Rally2 alongside Skoda, Citroen, Hyundai and Ford. Instead, new rules will be introduced to relaunch the top division, with an eye to containing costs also at the level of aerodynamics and of turbo: in particular, interventions are expected on restrictorwhich has caused several controversies in recent seasons.


Starting from 2026, they will then start decidedly more massive interventions to revitalize the “top division” of the World Cup: the security cell will be designed from a common basis, to allow simpler and more economical development. An innovation that aims to attract new manufacturers, thanks to the possibility of developing cars based on models stock blocks, that is, strictly standard. The list of Rally1s that can be set up with these new rules it is very vast and even covers compact Sport Utility Wagons. According to initial rumors, a power limit of 330 HP could also be introduced, with much less exaggerated engines and gearboxes of the current ones.


In June 2024, the plan that should revolutionize the World Rally Championship in depth will be revealed. It is hoped that this will lead to a decisive relaunch of a championship in crisis, with just four drivers – Loeb, Ogier, Tanak and Kalle Rovanpera – capable of entering the category’s roll of honor since 2004 by reaping titles in sequence. A monotony that brought to the progressive flight of most of the builders: while some like Citroën and Skoda have preferred to invest in the smaller classes, others like Subaru, Mitsubishi and Peugeot they left the scene with their feet.