Sébastien Ogier has been confirmed as a Volkswagen WRC driver following his departure from Citroen last week.
The Frenchman split with his long-term employers following an acrimonious season alongside eight-time WRC champion Sebastian Loeb. He was replaced by Ford's Mikko Hirvonen and had initially been expected to take the Finn's seat at the blue oval's works outfit.
However with doubts over Ford's continued participation in the series Ogier has signed-up to spearhead VW's assault on the championship. The German marque will rcontinue development work on the car in 2012 before launching a full-scale attack in 2013.
"Volkswagen is the number one in Europe and will soon be number one in the world,” said Ogier. "I’m sure that they’re going to compete with the goal of clinching the WRC title And I’m happy to be part of this from the outset.”
Added VW Motorsport Director Kris Nissen: "We are proud that such a successful and quick duo as Sébastian Ogier and his co-driver Julien Ingrassia have decided to join Volkswagen.
"The aim of putting a competitive Polo R WRC on the road for them as quickly as possible will additionally drive our team. We look forward to working with them and are hoping for many victories and titles in the future.”
VW have also confirmed that rally legend Carlos Sainz - who has already carried out development work on the new car - will remain on board as an expert adviser to the Volkswagen team.