You didn't think that Sébastien Loeb was just going to completely give up racing altogether, did you? Sure, the dynamic French driver may have decided to call it quits in the World Rally Championship with nothing left to prove (he did, after all, thoroughly dominated the sport from 2003 through 2012 and won the Driver's Championship each of those nine years), but the draw of competition is apparently too great to ignore.

Citroën – the automaker Loeb won each of his nine WRC championships with – has officially announced that it is entering the World Touring Car Championship with their favorite driver in 2014. Citroën CEO Frédéric Banzet cites "extensive media coverage, regulations that keep costs down and a genuinely global race calendar" that will "help [Citroën] to develop the brand in promising growth markets such as China, Russia and South America" as reasons for entering. The team will be sponsored by the automaker's longtime partner, Total.

There's not much more to the press release below, but it's there if you're interested in taking a look.
Show full PR text
CITROËN to enter the FIA WTCC with Sebastien Loeb in 2014

Motor racing is hard-coded in Citroën's DNA, but it comes in many shapes and sizes. After dominating several road-based events around the world for over twenty years, the Brand is now set to turn its attention to track racing, entering the FIA World Touring Car Championship (FIA WTCC) from 2014 onwards. This will be a new challenge both for Citroën Racing and for Sébastien Loeb, who will be driving one of the cars entered in the championship

After first mentioning that it was considering taking part in the FIA WTCC at the opening of last year's Paris Motor Show , Citroën can now confirm it will be joining the championship in 2014. Holder of five Cross Country Rally World Cups and eight World Rally Championship Manufacturers' titles , Citroën will therefore be entering an international track racing championship for the first time. This strong message underlines the importance of motorsport for Citroën, a technological laboratory for the French manufacturer, and the Brand's determination to continue its fantastic relationship with Sébastien Loeb by taking on this new challenge together.

"Citroën Racing has spent the last few months looking in detail at the opportunity of going ahead with this programme," revealed Frédéric Banzet, CEO of the Citroën Brand. "The WTCC is based on several aspects that are essential to Citroën: extensive media coverage, regulations that keep costs down and a genuinely global race calendar. Our involvement in this championship will give us not only another chance to showcase our Créative Technologie but it will also help us to develop the Brand in promising, growth markets such as China, Russia and South America. I would like to take this opportunity to thank our longstanding partner, Total, who will remain at our side for this new adventure."


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 7 Comments
      RGT881
      • 1 Year Ago
      Who is paying for this? No doubt that if GM take over PSA then they'll shut this program down. Not that I'm against it or anything and certainly I'd like to see Loeb succeed elsewhere other than WRC. Hopefully they got sponsors or some independent racing team that can do the leg work of R&D. Costs don't go down after one year of participation, typically it's quite the opposite.
        GFB
        • 1 Year Ago
        @RGT881
        I wonder if Citroen's WRC team was one of the few of their businesses that showed black ink on the balance sheet.
        thequebecerinfrance
        • 1 Year Ago
        @RGT881
        It's the best advertisement they have. They talk about Loeb and across Europe. I don't think it's prohibitive compared to what specific advertisement cost. They still need to sell more cars but there is no market to buy them. Production needs to go down for all the parties involved, simple as that. So someone is going down.
      groingo
      • 1 Year Ago
      "Its doom and gloom time, folks – PSA Peugeot-Citroën is seriously on the ropes". Money must be coming from other sources, but they are finished if GM runs the show!
        • 1 Year Ago
        @groingo
        [blocked]
          thequebecerinfrance
          • 1 Year Ago
          GM did fail on it's own and it's things don't look good if you look at the new Malibu. It is very hard to change a dinosaur. Maybe it will change but now they still need to prove it they can deliver the goods.
      Patrick
      • 1 Year Ago
      Petter Solberg was the 2003 World Rally Championship driver's champion
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