Sebastien Loeb Racing has confirmed Mehdi Bennani will continue with the team in the World Touring Car Championship next season.
The Moroccan joined the Loeb's eponymous team as it made the switch from sportscars to touring cars this year, driving a customer Citroen C-Elysee in the independents' trophy.
Though World Rally legend Loeb himself – who has raced with the factory Citroen WTCC team for the past two seasons – won't compete in 2016 after being dropped from the manufacturer's slimmed line-up, his team will continue with a potentially expanded effort.
For the time being, Bennani – who is 11th in the overall standings ahead of the Qatar season finale with a best finish this year of fourth – is delighted to secure an eighth consecutive season in the WTCC.
“Knowing that I will continue to race for the Sébastien Loeb Racing next season, just before the final round starts, is excellent news. It shows that I fully trust the team. It's a very professional squad, guided by their desire and search for performance.
“To be part of this process, while keeping in mind that we're racing for Sébastien Loeb who is a nine-time world champion, is absolutely unique. I want to thank all the people who have allowed me to reach this level I'm at today.
“To be supported in such a way by the Moroccan people and His Majesty King Mohammed VI, is both a huge honour and a great responsibility. I was the first driver from an Arab country to ever compete in WTCC. I hope to be the first one to clinch a world title in the discipline. Anyways, that's the goal we're working towards.”
SLR has hinted it could run as many as three cars next season after Citroen opted to reduce its involvement in the series from four to two cars for double champion Jose Maria Lopez and Yvan Muller.