Toyota to Return to WRC in 2017

On Friday, Toyota confirmed the worse kept secret in motorsport - it will officially return to the World Rally Championship arena in 2017 with a Yaris WRC. The announcement was made by the Toyota Motor Corporation president Akio Toyoda at a press conference in Tokyo on Friday. Toyota, the world's largest carmaker last competed in the WRC during 1999 with Carlos Sainz and left as champions, having clinched a seventh world title in 10 years

The company's Cologne-based motor sport arm; Toyota Motorsport GmbH - will develop the Yaris WRC for the next two seasons before its world championship debut in 2017 and the car was given its first public viewing at the press-conference.

Toyota's proposed 2017 campaign is being referred to as a 'new start' rather than a 'comeback', given how long it had been away and the WRC Promoter's Oliver Ciesla welcomed Toyota back, saying its arrival was a major endorsement for the series, which currently has three works teams in Volkswagen, Citroen and Hyundai alongside Fords run by ex-factory squad M-Sport.

The announcement will be welcomed by the popular manufacturer's extensive global fan-base.

31st January, 2015