Ex-GRC Honda Civic Coupe approved to compete in World Rallycross

The ex-Global Rallycross Honda Civic Coupe has been approved for the FIA's World and Americas Rallycross Championships

Ex-GRC Honda Civic Coupe approved to compete in World Rallycross

Build by Swedish team OlsbergsMSE to compete in the now defunct GRC series in America, which ran under its own regulations, the Civic has been added to the 'list of cars not homologated with the FIA but eligible in Supercar', by the Swedish governing body SFB after a lengthy process.

World RX promoter IMG's new-for-2018 Americas series is being run under similar FIA regulations to the world series, meaning that until now the Civic has been ineligible to compete outside of regional events this season.

OMSE boss Andreas Eriksson explained that clarification surrounding the internal cabin size of the car had caused the delay.

"Nobody has done anything wrong really, it's just taken a while to get it on the list because it's a Coupe, there's a lot of measurements that have needed to be done for people to be sure," he told Autosport.

"Because the car is only sold in America that has made it a little harder, but it's on the list now and we are starting to renovate the cars so they are back in business."

The Civic claimed multiple podiums during its two years in GRC and a single victory in the hands of Swede Sebastien Eriksson in Louisville last year.

It was designed with in-board suspension, and that concept was carried over onto Olsbergs' Ford Performance-backed Fiesta for World RX this season.

Lessons learnt from the Fiesta are now being implemented onto the Civic at OMSE's Nynashamn base.

"The Honda will come massively improved I think," said Eriksson. "We are also making it fit to FIA rules, we need to make sure they are legal in every way.

"I personally like the Honda - even if it's big, it's different and looks different."

The Civic has run recently in testing in Sweden as the team worked to get on top of engine issues it has suffered in World RX this year.

Now working with Swedish tuner Trollspeed instead of long-term partner Mountune, OMSE's upgrades, implemented into the Fiesta at the recent Canadian World RX round, are also expected to be run in the Civic once rebuilt.

He added that Honda was still keen to be involved in rallycross after the GRC's demise.

"Exactly what we're doing with the Honda going forward we haven't decided yet, but we will make sure they are ready and competitive," said Eriksson.

"[Honda] didn't stop rallycross because they didn't like it, they stopped because it wasn't making sense because of different happenings.

"They are still very keen to do it, it fits their market. Honda is huge in north America so I think it's important to have them involved."

The team is expecting to run at least one Civic before the end of the year, which is likely to be in a RallyX Nordic or World RX round.

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Series World Rallycross
Author Hal Ridge
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