The Ford name will soon be making a return to the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) in the upcoming 2018 season after previously pulling out in 2012. Following success of the M-Sport World Rally Team, the Michigan based manufacturer has officially announced entry into WRC and promised further support for the team. For 2018, the team will be rebranded to the M-Sport Ford World Rally Team.
“It's great to see the Ford name back alongside M-Sport in the World Rally Championship.We welcome the increased level of technical support from Ford Performance. Defending the two world titles is going to be a big job for us next year, so we’re very grateful for the support from Ford,” said M-Sport team principal Malcom Wilson, who spoke with Motorsports.com.
Prior to the 2018, Ford has previously partnered up with M-Sport for their WRC involvement from 1997 to until the end of the 2012 season. Together, they managed to take 52 wins and two manufacturer world championships. However, it was not only in 2012 did Ford first pulled out of the sport. They also stepped out of the scene back in 1980 after winning the 1979 season, and only returned in 1986 with the RS200.
In the 2018 season, the M-Sport Ford team will once again be continue development and use of the Fiesta World Rally Car. 2017 WRC champion Sebastian Ogier will also be retained as the team driver. He has signed on for another as his request of Ford providing factory backing was met.