Subaru is returning to motorsport. In collaboration with Team BMR, Subaru will race the new Levorg in the 2016 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship.
Behind the wheel will be long-time touring car driver Jason Plato and Colin Turkington, who secured victory in the 2014 championship.
It’s understood that additional Levorgs may also compete, potentially with team boss Warren Scott at the controls.
Although known for its asymmetrical all-wheel-drive system, the Levorg will run in rear-wheel drive form to comply with BTCC regulations.
“The iconic Subaru brand has always been right at the top of my wish list,” said Plato, who had been instrumental in bringing the deal together.
“Obviously it goes without saying that I am very excited about our future together and I’m confident that BMR will produce a fantastic package for me to fight for the Championship. This really is exciting times for us all… I can’t wait for the season to begin.”
Team BMR has signed a three-year deal with Subaru, but has just two months to develop the car and its iconic ‘boxer’ engine to full race specifications.
Colin Turkington said “I can’t wait to get started with the development of the new Subaru Levorg BTCC race car and I’m more motivated than ever to win. This announcement is huge news for the Championship and equally for me.”
Chief Designer Carl Faux is also clearly looking forward to the task ahead. “Engineering challenges is what the project presents – a new car, new engine and all the new generation TOCA components require a methodical approach. Establishing a three-year programme means we can focus on getting the basics right early before developing the package further over the following years.”
Alan Gow, BTCC Series Director commented: “We are delighted to welcome another manufacturer to the BTCC and particularly one with such an incredible motor sport heritage. Subaru is an iconic brand with a huge following and its introduction to the BTCC is certain to excite our many fans around the world. I am sure the collaboration with Team BMR and its hugely experienced and talented driver line-up will make for a very successful partnership.”
In our review of the Subaru Levorg, we described it as “one of the best handling estate cars on the market today,” which bodes well for its performance in the touring car championship.
The BTCC Season Launch takes place at Donington Park on 22 March, with the opening round of the 2016 championship currently scheduled to take place at Brands Hatch in early April.