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2012-10-15 08:11

END OF A COMEBACK... Mini's year of rallying comeback is over but homologated cars will be offered to private teams for 2013

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2012 'Rolls-Royce' Mini special

MUNICH, Germany - Mini will terminate its involvement in the World Rally Championship at the end of the 2012 season.

The automaker said it would allow interested companies to race its WRC-tuned car.

Kay Segler, a vice-president at Mini, said: “Mini will abandon its works involvement in the WRC at the end of the 2012 season. By the end of the season WRC Team Mini Portugal will have competed in every rally in 2012.

MORE DEVELOPMENT

"As such, in accordance with FIA regulations, we will have achieved the WRC homologation for the MINI John Cooper Works. In doing so, we will have achieved the prerequisites to allow those interested to continue to run the car in the WRC on a customer rallying basis."

BMW will continue to develop the 1.6-litre turbo engine and provide team Prodrive with parts.

From its rallying debut early in 2011, the Mini John Cooper Works WRC turned out to be a successful model with three podiums and many top-10 finishes.

The biggest success was driver Dani Sordo's second place in January 2012 in the Monte Carlo Rally. Mini (the original) won three times in Monte Carlo (1964, 1965 and 1967).

RETAINING PRESENCE

Segler said: "In a very difficult commercial environment, Mini has played an active role in ensuring that friends of the brand can continue to participate in motorsport. As such, the Mini family is retaining its presence on various international platforms and getting even closer to its customers.

"We would like to see the Mini John Cooper Works WRC continue to run competitively in WRC and other championships."

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