Peugeot commits to 2018 WRX season with Loeb

Peugeot will continue its programme in the World Rallycross Championship next season together with nine-time World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb.

Peugeot commits to 2018 WRX season with Loeb

Competing as Team Peugeot Hansen in a partnership with Kenneth Hansen's team, Peugeot has been involved in World RX since the series gained World Championship status in 2014, and won the Teams' Championship title in 2015 with the 208 WRX.

Following uncertainty about its future in the series, in a statement released on Wednesday, Peugeot sited that World RX's 'global ambitions' tie in with its business growth plan outside Europe, and that it is ready to support the implementation of an electric category into the series.

'The brand is ready to support the evolutions in E-WRX as part of its technological plan, which aims to offer 80% of the models in electrified version by 2023,' it said.

"The brand wants to be involved in a new challenge with the idea of accompanying its own energy transition but also to create a strong and unique link with new customers and the new generation. The E-WRX is the perfect fit for this strategy," said Peugeot brand Chief Executive, Jean-Philippe Imparato.

"Our ambassador Sebastien Loeb will support us in this daring new adventure. The goal of the 2018 season will be to win the title. To this end, we are strengthening the developments initiated by Peugeot Sport and studying the sports management system implemented by the Hansen family since 2014."

No indication has been given as to whether the relationship with Hansen Motorsport will continue, or who aside from Loeb will drive for the team in 2018.

This season, Loeb has been partnered by Swedish driver Timmy Hansen, who has driven for the Peugeot-Hansen squad since its inception.

It has also run a third 208 WRX for 2016 European Champion Kevin Hansen, who has raced a year-old specification car.

"It's a great opportunity to launch myself into a new "electrifying" experience and to be even closer to my fans with the WRX," said Loeb. "I look forward to discovering this new sporting frontier."

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Series World Rallycross
Author Hal Ridge