I bet the WRC company is glad at the news as well, after losing Peugeot, Citroen and Skoda at the end of last year, the doomsayers may well be silenced. When Suzuki join next year, they will join Subaru, Ford, Citroen (rejoining after a sabbatical) and a couple of private top level teams in competition for the WRC championship.
Suzuki SX4 WRC Concept (Credit: Suzuki)
Suzuki confirms WRC bid.
The Suzuki Motor Corporation has finally revealed its future rally plans, confirming at the Geneva Motor Show that it will enter the World Rally Championship from August 2007.
Having revealed the first picture of the SX4 model last week, the company has determine that it will be put to use in the WRC, rather than just as the next challenger for the Junior World Rally Championship, in which the marque has proven so successful over the past few seasons. The announcement coincided with the launch of the road-going SX4 in Switzerland.
The Rally Sport version of the new car has been developed alongside the retail models, and a JWRC version will now be the focus of further detailed development and testing to increase its competitive potential ahead of the proposed WRC challenge next season.
Exact technical details of the SX4 WRC will be revealed as it builds up to its first competitive appearances, but the current specification includes a new two-litre turbo charged J20 engine, which already provides torque of 65kg.m at 3000rpm and 320bhp at 4000-5000rpm. A new all-wheel drive system is being developed for the WRC car by Suzuki, and will include mechanical differentials front and rear and an electronic version mounted centrally. The car is expected to run a five-speed sequential gearbox.
Crash.Net WORLD RALLY: Suzuki confirms WRC bid.