Ogier expects "more uncertainty than ever" in WRC's new hybrid era

Sebastien Ogier believes there will be “more uncertainty than ever” at next year’s World Rally Championship Monte Carlo opener as team’s grapple with the reliability of all-new hybrid machinery.

The eight-time world champion tested Toyota's new GR Yaris of the first time last weekend as he stepped up his preparations for the Monte Carlo Rally, the only confirmed WRC event of his partial 2022 campaign so far.

Ogier took part in a rescheduled two-day test on French tarmac after his original outing was postponed last month when Elfyn Evans suffered a crash, damaging the test car.

While Ogier enjoyed his maiden outing in a Rally1 hybrid WRC car, the 37-year-old expects reliability to be a factor at the beginning of the season as teams adjust to the WRC's new Rally1 regulations.

"I think in the early weeks of the season reliability can play a bigger role because these cars are very new and we see that every test big progress is being made," said Ogier, an eight-time winner of the Monte Carlo Rally.

"It is possible compared to the last season that it could play a bigger role, but I'm confident that the team are going to work hard and succeed in making this car evolve in performance and in reliability.

"We have to be honest going to Monte Carlo there is a huge question marks for everybody and more uncertainty than ever I believe."

Sébastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia, Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota Yaris WRC

Sébastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia, Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota Yaris WRC

Photo by: Toyota Racing

Comparing the GR Yaris to its predecessor, that guided the Frenchman to two world titles in 2020 and this season, Ogier admits the car is a "step back" in terms of performance" but is confident that pace will improve as teams develop their Rally1 machines.

Under the 2022 regulations, Rally1 cars will produce 500 horsepower when the hybrid boost from the 100kW electric motor is engaged and combined with the 1.6 litre turbo-charged internal combustion engine.

"I think you have to be honest it is a step back in terms of performance, the cars are slower and heavier and the technical regulation making quite a bit more limitations in many ways," he added.

"But for me the most important as long as everyone is racing the same material it will make for an exciting competition.

"I'm also confident the car will quickly progress and I think we have seen in the last generation of WRC cars, they are not as fast as they are now at the end of 2021, compared to 2017 when they came out. I really believe it will be the same process with these cars.

Read Also:

"When the boost is there, for sure it is fun. We all like to have power and it has been enjoyable discovering that. The truth is it is not there all the time and generally we have to be honest we are slower than we have been the last year.

"I think there is still some progress to be done and it is going to be exciting to follow how it improves, but at the end the interesting challenge is to adapt as soon as you can and progress faster than the others."

Ogier is expected to drive the 2022 Yaris again this month before another outing in next month prior to the Monte Carlo Rally held across 20-23 January.

shares
comments
Ogier tests 2022 Toyota WRC Rally1 Yaris for first time
Previous article

Ogier tests 2022 Toyota WRC Rally1 Yaris for first time

Next article

FIA announces new WRC 2022 cost-saving measures

FIA announces new WRC 2022 cost-saving measures
Load comments
The WRC star that's earned the right to lead M-Sport's revival Prime

The WRC star that's earned the right to lead M-Sport's revival

Part-time opportunities with Citroen and Hyundai have offered brief glimpses of what Craig Breen can do in a World Rally Championship car. Now signed up by M-Sport to lead it into the WRC's new hybrid era, Breen has been given the chance he's pursued for so long and is determined to make the most of it

WRC
Jan 18, 2022
Why the WRC's 'modern Group B' era was rallying at its bonkers best Prime

Why the WRC's 'modern Group B' era was rallying at its bonkers best

The World Rally Championship has brought down the curtain on the aggressive, aero-laden generation of cars first introduced in 2017 that have been likened to the 1980s Group B icons. As the championship prepares to begin a new era of Rally1 hybrid cars, its stars explain just why the outgoing machines were so special

WRC
Dec 24, 2021
Ranking the top 10 WRC drivers of 2021 Prime

Ranking the top 10 WRC drivers of 2021

On the eve of a new hybrid era for the World Rally Championship, the 2021 season was a blockbuster fought out between Toyota's two top dogs, with a familiar figure eventually emerging on top after a final showdown at Monza. We pick out the 10 best performers from the top class and its supporting cast

WRC
Dec 21, 2021
Why Ogier's WRC swansong was a season to savour Prime

Why Ogier's WRC swansong was a season to savour

He’s shuffling into semi-rally-retirement, but Toyota star Sebastien Ogier was at the peak of his powers in the final season for the high downforce era-World Rally Championship cars. Despite Toyota's domination, there was still much to enjoy as the old master emerged atop a fierce title fight against teammate Elfyn Evans.

WRC
Dec 19, 2021
How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers Prime

How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers

After winning his eighth WRC title, Sebastien Ogier has drawn the curtain on his full-time rallying career. To understand Ogier's legacy, many of his former rivals, team-mates and colleagues have shared their thoughts on a vastly successful career

WRC
Nov 26, 2021
Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies Prime

Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies

Richard Burns was a determined driver who took on the best rally drivers in the world during a boom period in the early 2000s, and beat them. On the 20th anniversary of his crowning glory in winning the 2001 WRC title, and 16 years on from his death on the same date, we pick out his 10 greatest drives

WRC
Nov 25, 2021
The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion Prime

The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion

At the turn of the millennium, WRC was full to the brim with rallying's great and good - and 20 years ago on this day, Richard Burns became England's first world rally champion. Although Burns' natural talent drove him to the top, his steely determination and mental strength was the key attribute behind his title-winning form

WRC
Nov 25, 2021
How Ogier emerged from Loeb's shadow to form his own WRC legend Prime

How Ogier emerged from Loeb's shadow to form his own WRC legend

OPINION: Adding an eighth WRC title to his name, Sebastien Ogier has bowed out from full-time rallying in style. Having been compared throughout his career with nine-time champion Sebastien Loeb, Ogier has convincingly demonstrated that he can stand on his own as one of the greatest rally drivers in history

WRC
Nov 22, 2021