Volkswagen has big plans for its future, but it doesn't include any form of motorsport.
The German marque will be terminating its motorsports and racing division in order to allocate more time and money to the development of upcoming electric vehicles. All 169 people working at Volkswagen Motorsport GmbH will then be transferred and reassigned to work on the brand's growing line of electric vehicles and related fields.
By shutting down its motorsport division, several programs have been affected including Volkwagen's rally and TCR customer racing programs. Even the all-electric Volkswagen ID.R racer will be in parc ferme indefinitely. The shutdown won't happen immediately as the German marque will continue production of the Polo GTI R5 rally car until the end of 2020. Meanwhile, the long-term supply of spare parts for the rally car and the Golf GTI TCR for the racing circuit is secure.
“The Volkswagen brand is on the way to becoming the leading provider for sustainable e-mobility. To this end, we are pooling our strengths and have decided to terminate the Volkswagen brand’s own motorsport activities. The motorsport workforce will be integrated into Volkswagen AG. The deep technical expertise of the motorsport employees and the know-how gained from the ID.R project will remain with the company and will help us put further efficient models from the ID. family on the road ” said Dr. Frank Welsch, Volkswagen's head of development.
While fans will be sad to say goodbye to Volkswagen in motorsport, other automakers under the large Volkswagen Group wing will continue racing for years to come. Audi may be quitting Formula E, but the brand will be joining the 2021 Dakar Rally. The brand will also be lining up a challenger for the WEC's new hypercar class. Porsche also quit WEC but has been focusing on its Formula E racing series.
Motorsport may be something Volkswagen doesn't need anymore, but at least the performance versions will still be there like the new Golf GTI and upcoming Golf R.... except in the Philippines.