Volkswagen has announced that it is ending all its factory motorsport programmes. The automaker said that the decision to terminate its involvement in racing activities is part of a realignment, one that will focus on redeploying resources for its ever-growing push into electric mobility.

“The Volkswagen brand is on the way to becoming the leading provider for sustainable e-mobility. To this end, we are pooling our strengths and have decided to terminate the Volkswagen brand’s own motorsport activities,” chief development officer Frank Welsch said in a statement.

The end of Volkswagen’s racing activities means time is being called on the all-electric ID.R project. The purpose-built ID.R racer has been a successful poster car for the brand, and retires as record holder of the Pikes Peak climb and as the fastest ever EV to run the Nürburgring North Loop. The car also set the Goodwood hillclimb and Tianmen Mountain hillclimb records last year.

The company said that all 169 staff of its Volkswagen Motorsport division, which is based in Hanover, will be absorbed into the Volkswagen network over the coming months. “The deep technical expertise of the motorsport employees and the know-how gained from the ID.R project will remain with the company and will help us put further efficient models from the ID family on the road”, Welsch said.

The announcement comes a day after Audi said it was pulling out of Formula E at the end of the 2021 season. However, the company is not abandoning motorsports, because it is set to make a return to Le Mans, and in 2022 will also compete for the first time in the Dakar Rally.

The automaker said that while production of the Polo GTI R5 customer rally car will cease at the end of 2020, the long-term supply of spare parts for the model as well as the Golf GTI TCR is ensured.