STI, the motorsports arm of Subaru, announced that the company will compete in Round 7 of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC), the "Acropolis Rally" to be held at the end of May with two of the latest evolution models of the Subaru Impreza WRC, the WRC 2008.
Currently, the main car manufacturer's competing in the WRC use World Rally Cars based on production road cars with specific modifications for rally competition. The latest World Rally car, the "Subaru Impreza WRC 2008", is based on the FHI-manufactured "Subaru Impreza" first released in 2007. The new model has now completed its final development tests and is set to run in actual competition.
The latest "Subaru Impreza WRC 2008" features a longer wheel base, with shorter front/rear overhangs than the previous model. Additionally, the rear wing, fitted to the boot on the old model, is now affixed to the tailgate on the new car, making it a feature of the new model's exterior appearance. Meanwhile, well experienced Subaru horizontally-opposed two liter turbo engine, producing about 300 horsepower and Subaru Symmetrical All Wheel Drive System are refined and will continue to be used.
Until the current model, Subaru World Rally Cars have featured a "comet"-based livery on blue as Subaru's unique identity. The new car features a completely revised design. The new colour scheme, created by the design department at FHI, continues with the blue base, but now uses the SUBARU logo adorned on the centre of the body, wrapped with white and silver lines. Accompanying the release of the new World Rally car, the team's visual identity, such as drivers' overalls, and work tents as used in the Service Park, will also have the new design scheme.
Running of the "Subaru Impreza WRC 2008" will continue to be undertaken by the U.K.-based Subaru World Rally Team headed by David Richards. The team is competing in the "Acropolis Rally" which takes place from May 29th to June 1st, based around Athens, Greece with ace driver Petter Solberg (Norway) and Chris Atkinson (Australia), both of whom will drive the new World Rally car.
Further details of the new World Rally car will be made on May 28th at a press conference at the rally venue.