High-ranking sources within the World Rally Championship have moved to quell speculation surrounding the technical regulations for the series in 2011 and beyond.
The last World Motor Sport Council meeting confirmed that the WRC would run with turbocharged 1.6-litre engines from 2011 onwards. Since then, however, there has been talk of 2011 running to straight Super 2000 regulations, with the 1.6 turbo engine coming in from 2012. But AUTOSPORT has learned that this will not be the case.
"This on-going debate about what format of technical regulations we're running to has to stop," a WRC insider told AUTOSPORT. "It's not helping the championship at all right now. We need stability in the regulations and that's what the FIA has given to us, we're not going to have anything undermine that right now. Believe me, World Rally cars, 2011 onwards, will run with 1.6-litre turbocharged engines."
Both current WRC manufacturers Citroen and Ford had been interested in running Super 2000 engines in 2011 to delay the cost of developing and producing a new engine. Both firms insist, however, that they will build the new engine if and when a new manufacturer signs up to 1.6 turbo WRC regulations for 2011.
WRC commission president Morrie Chandler made the FIA's position clear during Rally Poland in June, underlining that commitment to a shift to 1600cc.
The debate was confused with rumours of a commitment from Skoda to the 2011 WRC, providing the regulations remained Super 2000 - which would allow the Czech Republic firm to enter with its current Fabia S2000.
The source added: "We've heard nothing from Skoda. Of course the WRC would welcome new manufacturers, but they have to acknowledge the rules which we're going to be working to - and those technical rules have been laid out quite plainly.
"We're looking at a bigger picture here, involving more manufacturers coming into the sport, but they're only going to come if the future of WRC is well-planned, clear and concise running to understandable and predictable regulations. That's absolutely the case."