Nissan withdraws 2016 world endurance entry

Wed Dec 23, 2015 5:41am EST
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(Reuters) - Nissan has withdrawn from next year's World Endurance Championship (WEC), which has the Le Mans 24 Hours as its headline race, after their 2015 car proved uncompetitive.

"The teams worked diligently to bring the vehicles up to the desired performance levels," the Japanese company said in a statement.

"However, the company concluded that the program would not be able to reach its ambitions and decided to focus on developing its longer term racing strategies."

Nissan said their commitment to motorsport remained strong and they would continue to support the WEC through various engine programs.

The company returned to the top LMP1 level of the endurance series this year with a front-wheel-drive GT-R LM NISMO car but it was well off the pace at Le Mans, the only race it contested.

The 2016 season starts at Silverstone in April, with Porsche the defending champions.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Sudipto Ganguly)

Logo of the Nissan Motor Co. is displayed at the 44th Tokyo Motor Show in Tokyo, Japan, November 2, 2015. REUTERS/Issei Kato