The FIA World Motor Sport Council has finalised the details of the 2015 FIA World Touring Car Championship calendar, with the published schedule featuring a number of significant omissions and new events.

The championship season will start at Argentina’s Termas de Río Hondo circuit in March and end in November with an all-new event at Qatar’s Losail circuit, which will play host to the series’ first ever night race. Despite a number of last-ditch negotiations, the traditional season finale at Macau has been dropped. The rounds will follow a traditional two ‘sprint race’ format.

Following the championship’s sole visit to the Americas at the start of the season, the field heads to the streets of Marrakech – home of this year’s carnage-filled season-opener – before a run of European races, kicking off in May with a round at the Hungaroring.

The series then has its ‘blue ribbon’ round, where it plays a supporting role to the iconic Nürburgring 24 Hour race at the famous Nordschleife circuit. Following it are rounds at Moscow Raceway, the Slovakia Ring and Paul Ricard, before the calendar’s second new venue, a round on the streets of the Portuguese town of Vila Real.

There’s a two-month break while the equipment is shipped to three rounds in the Far East, kicking off with another new round at Japan’s Motegi road course, which is followed by the more familiar surrounds of the Shanghai International Circuit. The former will be the third different Japanese venue to host a WTCC round, with TI Aida and Suzuka (in ‘East’ and full ‘Grand Prix’ configurations) both having had turns in previous years.

The beginning of November will see Thailand’s Buriram International Circuit stage its first FIA-sanctioned World Championship event, before the grid heads to the Middle East to Qatar’s Losail circuit, which will be floodlit for the championship’s inaugural night race.

Gone from the schedule are rounds at Spa-Francorchamps – which returned in 2014 after a nine-year absence – the popular high-speed Salzburgring (pictured top), the traditional Macau finale and the little-loved Goldenport circuit in Beijing, which was a last-minute stand-in for the cancelled United States round at Sonoma Raceway.

2015 FIA World Touring Car Championship Calendar:

Date Event Venue
08 March Race of Argentina it Termas de Rio Hondo, Rio Hondo
19 April Race of Morocco it Circuit Moulay El Hassan, Marrakech
03 May Race of Hungary it Hungaroring, Budapest
16 May Race of Germany it Nürburgring Nordschleife, Nürburg
07 June Race of Russia ru Moscow Raceway, Moscow
21 June Race of Slovakia it Slovakia Ring, Orechová Potôň
28 June Race of France it Paul Ricard, Marseilles
12 July Race of Portugal it Vila Real street circuit
13 September Race of Japan jp Twin Ring Motegi road course, Motegi
27 September Race of China cn Shanghai International Circuit, Shanghai
01 November Race of Thailand it Buriram International Circuit
22 November Race of Qatar it Losail International Circuit, Lusail

Image via XPB Images

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.