The Mini WRC Team has finally confirmed the signing of Dani Sordo for its debut season.

It had been speculated for some time that the Spaniard would join the Prodrive-run operation, having been released by Citroen after competing for five years with the French brand at the highest level.

Sordo, who tested the Mini Countryman WRC last November, will join former Intercontinental Rally Challenge champion Kris Meeke at the team, which will enter at least six WRC events. The 27-year-old is pleased to be part of Mini's return to rallying.

“There has been a great deal of excitement surrounding Mini's return to the WRC, so to be part of this new team is a fantastic opportunity for me,” he said. “I'm sure Mini has a big future in the sport. I'm looking forward to working with Kris Meeke, having completed a very successful test with him in Sardinia last November.”

Dr Wolfgang Armbrecht, Senior Vice President Brand Management Mini, said: “Both Dani and Kris fit well with the Mini brand, and can offer the Mini WRC programme not only experience and speed but also the right chemistry we need to build the team.”

David Richards, Chairman of Prodrive, is optimistic that Sordo can help the team to become a challenger for major honours in the WRC. “Dani may only be 27, but he is already one of the most experienced drivers in the WRC and has been competing at the very highest level for the last five years,” said Richards. “I believe with the new Mini WRC and in the right environment, he can now take the next step and add to his 29 podiums with victories on WRC events and become a challenger for a WRC title.”

Sordo scored 29 podium finishes from his five years driving for Citroen, but failed to score a rally win as teammate to the all-conquering Sebastien Loeb.