Prodrive will not make any announcements about its next World Rally Championship project until next year – but technical director David Lapworth says it will be increasingly difficult to keep its secret in the coming months.
Speculation remains rife that Prodrive is working with Mini on a Crossover WRC, but any official confirmation of the deal has now been stalled until the spring.
The Crossover road car was due to be launched this year, but that has also been postponed until either next year's Geneva or Paris motorshow next year. Prodrive has been working on a theoretical new generation World Rally Car for much of this year, developing the parts required without actually working on a base model.
Lapworth said: "Right now there is nothing to say and I don't think there will be anything to say until the spring. This is not an official statement from me, it's just the way things look.
"That said, it's going to be very difficult to keep this thing under wraps. Very soon we will have to start involving more and more people: the FIA, a lot more suppliers and things like that. Once we do that, more is bound to come out. It's possible a holding statement might be made then. It's going to be hard to keep it a secret."
Asked whether the reason for the increased chatter about the car in the coming weeks was due to the road-going version arriving in Banbury, Lapworth replied: "That would be difficult, the car doesn't exist yet."
Mini's Crossover remains a concept car at the moment.