• Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012
  • Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012
  • Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012
  • Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012
  • Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012
  • Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012
  • Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012
  • Gerard Quinn and Malcolm Wilson unveil the Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car at the Autosport Show in Birmingham
  • The Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012 was officially unveilled at the Autosport Show by Gerard Quinn and Malcolm Wilson
  • The Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012 was unveilled at the Autosport Show, by Gerard Quinn and Malcolm Wilson. Castrol's Donald Smith was also on hand
  • The Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car 2012 was unveilled at the Autosport Show in Birmingham. Ford's gerard Quinn was joined by Malcolm Wilson and Castrol's Donald Smith
It appears that the World Rally Championship has lost another key player. After word that Mini is leaving WRC comes news that Ford is pulling out as well. While Mini's departure was rooted in its tenuous relationship with Prodrive, Ford's exit from the sport is tied to the poor economic climate in Europe.

According to a statement from Ford of Europe's VP of Marketing, Sales and Service, Roeland de Waard, "Ford has a long and proud history in the WRC and this was not an easy decision." He continued, "At this time, however, we determined that it was better for the company and the Ford brand to reduce our commitment to the WRC and deploy our resources in other areas."

While Ford's factory backing might be out, the rally masters at M-Sport were running the Ford team up until this news and plan to stay on with the Fiesta WRC in the years to come. The racing outfit, run by Malcolm Wilson, has achieved 52 wins and 208 podium finishes in the 16 seasons that it has been racing with Ford. The M-Sport boss voiced his gratitude toward the relationship with the automaker saying, "I would like to thank Ford of Europe for their enthusiastic support and the faith shown in the team over the past 16 seasons. We understand that tough decisions have had to be made to safeguard Ford jobs."

M-Sport has run Ford's factory team since 1997, and is talking with Ford to receive support in the form of vehicles and engineering. The extent of that support remains to be seen, and it is unknown if Ford will return to WRC if economic conditions in Europe improve.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 27 Comments
      RampantFury
      • 2 Years Ago
      This is it. The WRC is falling apart.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @RampantFury
        [blocked]
        Drew Smith
        • 2 Years Ago
        @RampantFury
        Agreed. There is absolutely nothing to hold it together at this point. Obviously, there will be private companies to buy the WRC Fiestas for their own teams, but without at least two manufacturers, it is over.
          dukeisduke
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Drew Smith
          They'll come back, but it may be a different series. It's very disappointing that Ford is leaving - I can remember when Carlos Sainz drove for them.
      wrxfrk16
      • 2 Years Ago
      At this rate the WRC is just going to be a couple of Citroens driving through a wood. I have to think over regulation on the part of the WRC has got to be part of this. Look at the earlier days of the WRC and especially the Group B cars, they were innovative and unique and pushed what the automakers were doing. And, they gave rise to some of the greatest race cars of all time. The Stratos, Quattro, RS200, Renault 5 Turbo, Lancia 037 and Delta Integrale, both the STi and Evo, etc. Nowadays they have them so closely regulated there's really no reason to stay involved. Racing is the testbed and trial by fire for what a company can do, why spend the money, why waste the time when the rulebook dictates exactly what you're going to make, not the parameters you have to work in.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      Drew Smith
      • 2 Years Ago
      My heart just broke.
      xspeedy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wish I was a child of the Group B days. I didn't get into rallye until just a few years ago. That was definitely a man's sport though Michelle was right up there, and respectfully so.
      carguy1701
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ruh roh.
      delsolo1
      • 2 Years Ago
      Like to have seen Ford drop NASCAR first.
        1454
        • 2 Years Ago
        @delsolo1
        I would just like to see nascar go belly up period.
          Lab Rat
          • 2 Years Ago
          @1454
          Carguy - don't squash my dreams.
          carguy1701
          • 2 Years Ago
          @1454
          SPOILER: that isn't going to happen. It generates revenues 2nd only to the NFL, so well over a billion dollars.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        May
        • 2 Years Ago
        RWD overstyled crappy gas guzzler won't change anything because gas in Europe costs about $9/gallon. And Ford will loose even more money in Europe thanks to new Mondeo (Fusion) which seems to have the same problem as new Focus - new generation is worse than the previous (European) one. New Focus is a disaster, sales are down by over 70% (yes, seventy), new Mondeo appears to be boring and expensive so I expect similar result. Ford loses money in Europe but it's only Ford's fault. One Ford policy doesn't work in EU because it means crappy cars for more money.
          May
          • 2 Years Ago
          @May
          Ignorant? Where? Not very positive reviews are facts, high price is a fact, huuuge Focus sales drop is a fact . About Mondeo, new one looks like to old one with new headlamps and simplified, dumbed down (visually) interior.
          HKGuns
          • 2 Years Ago
          @May
          Wow are you a clueless troll spouting nothing but mi-information.
          Stuka
          • 2 Years Ago
          @May
          Are you seriously that ignorant?
        breakfastburrito
        • 2 Years Ago
        corporate media shill
      Jew
      • 2 Years Ago
      Who will come in 2nd place to Citroen now?
      breakfastburrito
      • 2 Years Ago
      good riddence Ford! Return WRC to homologation rules! eliminate "kit/spec" cars, lower the fee of entry, and get the ACTUAL rally companies back in the competition - Audi, Subaru & Mitsubishi!
        David
        • 2 Years Ago
        @breakfastburrito
        Yeah, because Ford have never really done anything in the WRC, have they? Oh, wait, there's all those Rallies they won in the 1970's, before the "ACTUAL" rally companies decided to join. Oh, and all those rallies they won in the 1980's. And the 1990's. Oh, and the 2000's, you know, after all those "ACTUAL" rally companies pitched in too, and long after most of them pulled out because they were losing badly. Maybe you're just talking nonsense then.
      RickyBobby
      • 1 Year Ago
      Too bad. I think it is a bad decision. My son,15, wants a Fiesta because of the WRC. Now maybe he'll want some type of import. VW seems to be doing well and he's showing interest in them now. Ford, you're losing future buyers.
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