17 Dec 2008

Subaru pull out of WRC

6:00 am on 17 December 2008

Fuji Heavy Industries is withdrawing its Subaru team from the world rally championship due to the global economic crisis.

Subaru joins fellow Japanese automaker Suzuki Motor Corp, which announced its exit a day earlier.

Their exit leaves just world champions Citroen, owned by PSA Peugeot Citroen, and cash-strapped Ford Motor Co chasing the manufacturers' title next year.

Car makers all over the world are under severe pressure to find ways to reduce spending as a sudden downturn in global car demand knocks profitability.

Honda, Japan's No.2 car maker, this month quit Formula One racing for similar reasons, saying it needed the cash for its core business.