Austria, Czech Republic and Germany have joined forces to create the Central European Rally, which takes place from October 26-29. Based out of the south-east German city of Passau, it will be played out on asphalt and presents a fresh challenge for crews.

The relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions has also paved the way for the competition’s return to Northern and Southern America, with Chile and Mexico returning for the first time since 2019 and 2020 respectively.

“We were absolutely determined to get the World Rally Championship calendar back to where it was pre-COVID, with a good spread of events inside and outside Europe,” said the Championship’s Promoter Senior Director of Events, Simon Larkin.

“There was very high demand for the limited number of slots on the calendar, but we’re pleased with the range and variety of events we have. They will provide a great sporting challenge for the competitors, as well as providing the highest-profile events in each country.”

Monte Carlo (January 19-22) will once again raise the curtain on the 2023 season and be followed by Rally Sweden (February 9-12) with Mexico next up (March 16-19). Teams then pay visits to Croatia (April 20-23), Portugal (May 11-14), Italy (June 1-4) and Kenya (22-25 June) before a short summer break comes into effect.

The action resumes in Finland (August 3-6) before Greece (7-10 September), Chile (September 28 – October 1), Central Europe (October 26-29) and Japan (November 16-19) round out the calendar.

World Rally Championship Promoter Managing Director Jona Siebel added: “We are incredibly happy to be returning to North and South America. We have maintained a dialogue with the Mexican and Chilean organisers throughout the COVID pandemic and we are confident this is now the right time for our return.

“Additionally, with an exciting new concept added to the mix, the World Rally Championship is well-placed to reach more fans than ever before.”

World Rally Championship 2023 Calendar

Monte-Carlo: 19-22 January
Sweden: 9-12 February
Mexico: 16-19 March
Croatia: 20-23 April
Portugal: 11-14 May
Italy: 1-4 June
Kenya: 22-25 June
Estonia: 20-23 July
Finland: 3-6 August
Greece: 7-10 September
Chile: 28 September - 1 October
Central Europe Rally: 26-29 October
Japan: 16-19 November