German automaker Volkswagen AG, who made an entry into the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) in 2013 have announced a long-term involvement with the rallying series. Volkswagen Board has green lighted company’s plans of continued participation up to and including, 2019. The German automaker had made their first appearance in the rally with the Polo R WRC last year and immediately rose to stardom, having won all three titles - Driver, Co-Driver and Manufacturer - in the first attempt.
The brand’s involvement was earlier planned for only three years, from 2013 to 2015. The Board’s decision now sees this commitment extended by a further four years. “The Volkswagen’s Board’s decision to commit to the FIA World Rally Championship until 2019 makes us very proud. Volkswagen has never implemented a long-term motorsport programme on this scale before,” said Volkswagen Motorsport director Jost Capito.
“This faith is a huge motivation for our entire team not to rest on its laurels for a single second, but to continue to show the same degree of passion, determination and commitment to ensure we remain successful in the World Rally Championship. A prerequisite for the success of the championship itself is a format optimised for TV, in order to make rallying even more attractive for the general public. We call upon the promoters to work together with the manufacturers to significantly increase the media coverage of the series.” Capito further added.
“The FIA World Rally Championship is a very good platform for Volkswagen to demonstrate the efficiency, dynamics and reliability of its cars to a global public.” said Dr Heinz-Jakob Neuber, Volkswagen Board member for Technical Development and responsible for the brand’s motorsport programme. “The series is more closely oriented towards the technology used in the latest production vehicles than any other world championship, and based on the kind of real conditions that our customers all over the world experience on a daily basis. Furthermore, millions of people are passionate about this spectacular sport. The close interaction between the production and motorsport development departments at Volkswagen, the sporting contest with our direct rivals in various markets, and the huge potential for marketing in the media led to our decision to commit to a long-term involvement in the World Rally Championship” Neuber added.