General Motors' UK brand Vauxhall announced on Friday that it will depart from the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) at the end of the 2009 season due to the ongoing global economic crisis. "The decision to withdraw from the BTCC in 2010 was influenced by the absence of other manufacturer-backed teams and financial prudence in the current global economic downturn," Vauxhall said in a statement. However, the company left an open window for the future saying that it may return to the sport in future years.
"The company has enjoyed immense success with BTCC, both on track and as a focal marketing activity for the VXR brand. However a number of factors have led us to take the decision to withdraw from the championship at the end of this season," said Andy Gilson, Marketing Director, Vauxhall Motors. "Vauxhall's primary focus for next year will be bringing to market exciting new products, such as the new generation Astra and Meriva models."
For the remainder of the year, Vauxhall's team, VX Racing will continue to campaign on the BTCC with three cars driven by Fabrizio Giovanardi, Matt Neal and Andrew Jordan.