Suzuki Motor Corporation has decided to suspend its FIA World Rally Championship activities from 2009. The company made the 2008 season entry with two SX4 WRCs.
In response 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 long-term periods of time rather than a short-term phenomenon. To secure its own business environment for tomorrow, the organization has reviewed every aspect of the operation and decided to focus on the core business functions such as the manufacturing systems, environment technologies, and development of new-generation powertrains. As a result, Suzuki will suspend the WRC activities from 2009.
Suzuki started to participate in the Junior World Rally Championship (JWRC) in 2002 with the Ignis Super 1600 and in its history achieved driver's victories twice. In 2008 the company moved up into the WRC field. The entry to JWRC and WRC brought a great deal of positive effects on the product development and marketing activities, nurturing the sporty automotive brand image, especially in Europe.
Suzuki will continue to support customers who are participating in the JWRC, and local motor sport such as the Swift Cup with Swift Super 1600 machines in Europe and the rest of the world.
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.