V8 Supercars will be joined by a fifth manufacturer in 2014 – Volvo.
Volvo Car Australia today announced that it will be on the V8 Supercars Championship grid in 2014 in partnership with Garry Rogers Motorsport. As the first luxury car brand to join the V8 Supercars Championship with a factory team, Volvo Car Australia has joined forces with Volvo Car Group’s global motorsport partner Polestar to go racing.
“I’m delighted to announce our return to motorsport in Australia,” said Matt Braid, Volvo Car Australia Managing Director.
“Volvo has a rich motorsport heritage in this country, including winning Australia’s most famous race, Bathurst, 15 years ago this coming October.
“As the first luxury car brand to enter a factory team in the V8 Supercars Championship, we’re determined to add to this heritage, while strengthening the presence of the S60 model line and the Volvo brand here in Australia.”
James Warburton, CEO, V8 Supercars, said of the announcement: “To have another prestigious brand like Volvo in our sport is a red letter day for V8 Supercars.
“The strength of V8 Supercars is such that global brands, not limited to car manufacturers, are becoming increasingly aware of and directly involved in the business.
“It is my vision to build V8 Supercars into one of the strongest brands in the world with the partners to match. That is the level of untapped potential I believe this sport has.
“I am extremely delighted to have Volvo in our sport and congratulate Garry and his team on becoming the official Volvo factory team in V8 Supercars.”
The Swedish team will produce the V8 engine and assist Garry Rogers Motorsport in the development of the V8 Supercars campaign. Volvo Car Australia and Polestar are investing significant capital and resources into Garry Rogers Motorsport, who will produce and race two V8 Supercars based on the production S60 road car.
Garry Rogers said of the announcement:
“For myself and all our staff and sponsors who have been with us for a considerable time, the opportunity to utilise the Car of the Future regulations to introduce Volvo to our category is certainly very exciting. And I know that if we continue to work hard it will also become very rewarding.
“The opportunity to align ourselves with Volvo, one of the world’s most recognised brands, and team up with Christian Dahl and Polestar, is first class.
“I am still a racer at heart and the big plus of this relationship that impressed me more than others manufacturers I had spoken to was the fact these people had done their homework on the Car of the Future rules and regulations, and could see the commercial opportunities that this offered.
“Most heartening of all, I am dealing with people who understand racing from an engineering perspective and the personal, day-to-day matters you need to have experienced to achieve success.”
Volvo Car Australia has a rich heritage of motorsport in Australia, having won the 1986 Australian Touring Car Championship in 1986 with Robbie Francevic in a Volvo 240T.
This year marks the 15th anniversary of Volvo winning Australia’s most famous race, the Bathurst 1000 in 1998 with Jim Richards and Rickard Rydell in a Volvo S40.
“With Nissan and Mercedes-Benz AMG joining Ford and Holden on the grid this year, I am sure Volvo will become competitive very quickly, particularly under Garry’s leadership, in 2014.” Said Mark Skaife.
- Stephen Mison