Rally News

FIA’s 2025 WRC rules timeline too tight for Hyundai to do a “good job”

Cyril Abiteboul, Team principal Hyundai World Rally Team

The Hyundai boss had remained largely silent following the FIA’s reveal of a raft of proposals to improve the WRC in February.

However, the former Renault Formula 1 boss has now shared his frustrations over the proposals, which have already forced the team to scrap its investment into planned 2025 developments for its i20N Rally1 car. Abiteboul says the updates have been rendered redundant by the technical changes put forward for next year.

The technical changes proposed for next season will ensure the current Rally1 car will no longer see out its original homologation from 2022-2026. Hybrid power will be removed from car amid yet to be defined changes to aerodynamics and the air restrictor to bring the performance closer to Rally2 cars. An upgrade kit, costing around €5,000, will be made available for Rally2 competitors who wish to challenge the Rally1 cars at events in a bid to increase the top-level entry list.

The wide-ranging list of proposals, including new Rally1 regulations for 2025 and 2027, is set to be voted on by the World Motor Sport Council in June, which has left WRC teams concerned by the tight timeframe to complete the work required to be ready for next year.

“We are here but we are here to be able to win and that is as much as I can say,” Abiteboul told Motorsport.com.

“I want to get to the bottom of these regulations, and the one thing I must say, what we need is confirmation of regulations. We are now in the time of uncertainty, and uncertainty is not good for anyone.

“One of the things we are trying to do is to build a plan in advance, which Hyundai was not very good at in the past, so for once we have a new team and technical leadership and was pushing hard to have a very well-structured technical project, and that has been brought down by a regulator’s decision.

Cyril Abiteboul, Team principal Hyundai World Rally Team

Photo by: Fabien Dufour / Hyundai Motorsport

“It is vital that we have very quick rules ratified by the World Motor Sport Council so that we can simply work towards these regulations. For me, the timing of June is simply not possible for us to be able to do a good job for next year.

“I’m sure, if the FIA needs a quicker decision, I’m very confident they can find ways. They must appreciate that a ratification of rules in June for a car that needs to be designed, tested and validated for January, it is not a lot of time to design, build, test and…

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