Subaru to leave World Rally Championship

Subaru to leave World Rally Championship

Subaru WRC fq

The Rally world is swaying in shock after news that Subaru will not be competing in the 2009 World Rally Championship. Subaru’s parent company Fuji Heavy Industries has announced it is pulling its participation in the WRC, effective immediately.

Much like fellow Japanese automaker Honda, which has recently cancelled its Formula One program (read news item here), Fuji Heavy points to cutting costs during the current global economic crisis as its reason for cancelling its motorsport program. Understandable, considering the costs involved with running a factory WRC team but it’s still a shocking move for the automaker that earned its reputation on the rally circuit, even if they haven’t won a single stage since 2005.

The move also means that Prodrive, the racing consultancy firm that has operated the Subaru WRC team for over 20 years, will need to find a new partner for next season as the WRC pushes ahead with new regulations. The rally circuit may become a lonely place after Suzuki also cancelled its participation, leaving Ford and Citroen as the only manufacturers fielding factory teams in the top tier of rallying.

Subaru WRC fq

The Rally world is swaying in shock after news that Subaru will not be competing in the 2009 World Rally Championship. Subaru’s parent company Fuji Heavy Industries has announced it is pulling its participation in the WRC, effective immediately.

Much like fellow Japanese automaker Honda, which has recently cancelled its Formula One program (read news item here), Fuji Heavy points to cutting costs during the current global economic crisis as its reason for cancelling its motorsport program. Understandable, considering the costs involved with running a factory WRC team but it’s still a shocking move for the automaker that earned its reputation on the rally circuit, even if they haven’t won a single stage since 2005.

The move also means that Prodrive, the racing consultancy firm that has operated the Subaru WRC team for over 20 years, will need to find a new partner for next season as the WRC pushes ahead with new regulations. The rally circuit may become a lonely place after Suzuki also cancelled its participation, leaving Ford and Citroen as the only manufacturers fielding factory teams in the top tier of rallying.

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