Volvo will confirm it is joining the V8 Supercars championship with Garry Rogers Motorsport at the local media launch of its high performance S60 Polestar sports sedan in Queensland on June 17.
Volvo Car Australia managing director Matt Braid is in final negotiations this week to square away and sign off the deal, which means the S60 will be the third new model into the championship this year alongside the Nissan Altima and Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG taking on the traditional Ford Falcons and Holden Commodores.
Motoring.com.au learned of the Volvo V8SC plan weeks ago. After discussions with V8SC, motoring.com.au agreed to hold publication of the story to allow the final approval of the entry into the Aussie series to be signed off in secret at a board level meeting.
However, news of Volvo's interest has now leaked into the media, although VCA is denying its intention to enter the championship.
Veteran team owner Rogers, who previously courted Chrysler as a replacement for the Commodores he currently races, was also denying the deal today.
Volvo has singled out Australia as a trial market for its S60 Polestar six-cylinder, all-wheel-drive mid-size performance flagship.
The V8SC Volvo racer will feature a naturally-aspirated V8 and rear-wheel drive under the series’ existing rule structure.
Volvo has offered V8-powered S80 and XC90 variants in the past but these are no longer produced. The production cars feature the 4.4-litre engine mounted transversely. The engine features a 60-degree V-angle -- most V8s are 90-degree engines.
Polestar, Volvo’s equivalent of AMG or BMW’s M Division, currently races S60s in the Swedish TTA Elite Racing League. A silhouette formula, the TTA League features Volvo-bodied mid-engined V6 racers based on RenaultSport’s Megane Trophy.
In June 2012, Polestar boss Hans Baath told motoring.com.au, his company and the TTA League had looked closely at V8SC in the set-up of the Volvo’s participation in TTA.
S60 Volvos were also racing on the V8 Supercars undercard at Austin in the Pirelli World Challenge. Supported by Volvo North America, K-PAX Racing fields two modified AWD 2.5-litre turbo S60s in the series.
Volvo does have a history in Australian touring car racing too. Kiwi Robbie Francevic won the championship in a 240T in 1986, while both Peter Brock and Jim Richards drove for a distributor-backed team in the Australian Super Touring Championship in the 1990s.
Read the latest news and reviews on your mobile, iPhone or PDA at carsales' mobile site…