Munnich Motorsport has announced that it will go ahead and compete in the TC1 class of the FIA World Touring Car Championship in 2014 after purchasing the two remaining new-specification Chevrolet Cruzes.
The German team made its WTCC debut in 2013 entering a trio of SEAT Leons, with lead driver and defending champion Rob Huff finishing fourth in the overall standings after collecting two wins.
However, with new regulations coming into force for 2014 rendering the Leon as uncompetitive, Munnich duly announced plans to limit its WTCC involvement, instead preferring to continue with two SEATs in the TC2 sub-category for older machines alongside a headline programme in Rallycross.
Now, with the new season just a month away, ALL-INKL.com Munnich Motorsport has revealed new plans to race in the TC1 class after all with a pair of Chevrolet Cruzes, which are being built to new specification by RML.
Team owner-driver Rene Munnich will drive one of the new cars, with former F1 driver and multiple Italian Superstars title winner Gianni Morbidelli coming on to drive the second Cruze.
“I got an offer for the two new Chevrolet Cruze TC1 race cars at the last moment and bought them. I just couldn't reject that offer“, said Munnich. “We want to take up to that result this season and are looking forward to the races.”
A return to WTCC for Morbidelli, who raced an N Technology Alfa Romeon 156 to two podiums during the 2006 season, the Italian is looking forward to getting underway.
“I am really looking forward to start at the WTCC again and the work with René Münnich and his team that did a great job last year as the newbies of the World Touring Car Championship“
Despite Chevrolet pulling its factory involvement from WTCC at the end of the 2012 season, the privateer RML-prepared Cruze was still dominant in the hands of Yvan Muller in 2013. For 2014, RML is designing the Cruze to meet new, more extreme regulations and selling six to customers.
As well as Munnich, which reportedly picked up the two cars originally earmarked for sportscar-bound Bamboo, Campos Racing (Dusan Borkovic, Hugo Valente) and ROAL (Tom Chilton, Tom Coronel) will run two cars each.