Suzuki Reveal WRC Quit
“In responding to the contraction of the automotive sales caused by recent global economic turmoil, Suzuki has been promptly taking possible countermeasures including the reassessment of its global production output. The company, however, foresees the shrinking trend in longer periods of time rather than a short-term phenomenon.”
“To secure its own business environment for tomorrow, the organization reviews every aspect of the operations and decided to focus on the core business functions such as the manufacturing system, environment technologies, and development of new-generation power trains. As a result, Suzuki concluded to suspend the WRC activities from 2009,” read the Suzuki statement.
However, the Japanese manufacturer announced that they will not quit the world of rallying completely, as they are to provide independent teams with 'valued products' for the years to come.
“Suzuki expresses its great appreciation to sponsors and fans around the world for their strong support to its activities. The company will continue to provide valued products for its customers by utilizing the experiences earned through the JWRC and WRC activities,” added the statement.
The Japanese car maker debuted in the WRC last season – following their 6-year experience in the J-WRC championship – deciding to run a limited schedule of 10 events in the series. Toni Gardemeister and J-WRC champion Per-Gunnar Andersson were signed for the team's maiden WRC campaign, bringing home 34 points for Suzuki. The team ranked 5th overall in the constructors' classification.