Steane Klose | Feb 5, 2009

Yet another manufacturer is trimming the fat and pulling-the-pin on extracurricular activities: Mitsubishi has announced it will withdraw from the famous Dakar series and all other cross-country races. At this stage there has been no mention of Mitsubishi's plans for its WRC presence.

No surprises for guessing the reasons behind the move either, our unwelcome house guest Mr Stinking Global Economy is squarely to blame.

Mitsubishi has been such a dominant force in the Dakar series, its departure will leave a huge hole. Its 12 victories - seven of which were consecutive - from 26 entries in one of the world’s toughest off-road series, is something to be proud of.

mitsubishi_pajero_dakar

In the process, Mitsubishi has earned a reputation for producing rugged off-road machinery, with plenty of the Dakar technology filtering down through the Mitsubishi product range.

The next few years in motorsport are going to be tough people, of that there is no doubt. As companies struggle to stay afloat while the global economy continues to batter them senseless, extras like motorsport will continue to be sliced from the program.

It's not quite the "end of days", but it's certainly time to batten-down the hatches and prepare for the storm.

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