8 car companies and their biggest rally cars

Automakers have produced some great racing cars over the years, with rally cars being some of the most popular. Rally racing technology has helped improve road cars – from the first use of all-wheel drive in an Audi quattro to advanced driving technologies that save lives on a daily basis.
Rally racing has been around since the dawn of motoring, and the first official ‘rally’ event was the Monte Carlo Rally in 1911. Some reports even mention rally racing in 1894, with Paris Rouen Horse Carriage Competition (Horse-cart competition). Since then, the gathering has occurred on every continent, in different conditions – from scorching desert heat and cold snow-capped mountains to arid African jungles and humid Amazon rainforests. The rally stages are some of the most exciting and dangerous races on the planet.
As such, the manufacturers involved had to build their cars in such a way that they could withstand extreme conditions and drive very fast on unstable terrain. This has resulted in some of the most amazing cars ever made – both for the racing stages and for the road. Here are 8 companies and their biggest rally cars.

8 Mitsubishi – Lancer Evolution WRC

Mitsubishi has had a long racing history, since it was specifically dedicated to it an entire model. The Lancer Evolution is part of one of the greatest car battles ever – with the Subaru Impreza. Mitsubishi had multiple versions of the WRC Lancer – all approved as road cars for the public to live out their soaring fantasies.

The Lancer WRC cars were among the best in their class thanks to the engineering that went into them, but also because of the great drivers who raced the cars. Tommi Mäkinen was one of them with 22 of 24 wins in his career at the Mitsubishi Lancer WRC. Almost all Lancer models are equipped with a hatch 4G63 The turbo is 2.0 liters, which makes the engine one of the most popular in the world.
Related Topics: See three Mitsubishi Lancer Evos Drag Race cars

7 Subaru – Impreza WRC

The Impreza, the contender in the fight, certainly had the most famous paint – perhaps the most famous in the rally world. The Impreza WRC has seen a number of changes over the years but has remained a success, with 46 wins and 122 podiums out of 193 races. Notable drivers included the aforementioned Tommy Makinen, but the Impreza was also driven by Peter Solberg and the legend himself, Colin McRae.

Unlike the Lancer, Subaru had a flat-topped 4-liter turbocharged 2.0-liter, producing roughly the same power to stay within racing constraints. This engine was popularized by the Flat-4 and is still used in both racing and road applications for Subaru vehicles. The legacy that these two Japanese giants left in the world of rallying will not be easily forgotten.

6 Skoda – Octavia WRC

The Octavia is a relatively regular and mild sedan from the Czech automaker, but it made its debut as a proper rally car at the 1999 Monte Carlo Rally. The Skoda Octavia WRC ran for only three seasons, and was replaced by the Skoda Fabia WRC in the middle of the 2003 season.

The Octavia WRC was not the most successful of the race cars, but it did achieve a two-stage victory and a podium finish in the 2001 Safari Rally. The car was driven by several drivers during its time in existence, but the most notable was Stig Blomqvist who also drove the SAAB, Audi and Ford cars. Although the Skoda Octavia WRC wasn’t the best in the field, it was still a great car that’s still instantly recognizable to this day.

5 Lancia – Delta and Stratos 037

Lancia was racing king before Audi introduced all-wheel drive into the mix. The Lancia rally cars were among the most successful in the sport, with 037 and Stratos notching multiple victories. After Audi brought the Quattro into the rally fold, Lancia introduced the Delta HF Integrale WRC, which continued its old traditions.

The Lancia Rally cars were some of the most amazing cars in the world. Where other manufacturers have used hatchbacks and sedans to launch, Lancia has built mid-engine sports cars specifically designed for the sport. The Group B series, while dangerous, was a great time as manufacturers experimented with wacky and very powerful cars.
RELATED: This Is Why Lancia Was So Good, And Why They Vanished From The Face Of The Earth

4 Audi – quattro S1

The Audi Quattro S1 was one of the most powerful racing cars ever raced. The official power numbers for the S1 E2 were 470 hp from its inline-5 2.1-liter turbocharged engine. This was actually incorrect, as the car used a revolutionary recirculation system to keep the turbo spinning – even when the throttle is closed, reducing turbo lag and maintaining optimum engine power when you need it most.

This system resulted in the car producing nearly 500 horsepower. The Quattro S1 was the last B-segment car ever made by Audi, with the final factory versions in 1986 producing in excess of 590 hp. One of these cars won the 1987 Pikes Peak Hill Climb.
Related: Ahead of its time: the legendary rally car Audi S1 ​​E2 quattro

3 Toyota – Celica GT4

The Toyota Celica GT-Four was one of the most popular rally cars of the ’90s, not because it did so well and won so many races, but because Toyota cheated. All cars in the Group A rally were limited to 300 horsepower, however, and Toyota struggled to make the Celica competitive. So they cheated and gave the car more power.

It was an ingenious way to get the turbo to suck in more air and generate more power, all without the knowledge of the FIA. They designed the turbo restraint plate so that it moves during the race, but feels solid when examined. Toyota was discontinued in 1995 and banned from competing in the 1996 and 1997 competitions.

2 Ford – RS200

The Ford RS200 is one of the most ridiculous racing cars of all time. The car was specifically designed for Group B racing. It was fitted with a Cosworth 1.8L i4 engine that produced 250 hp in road trim and between 350 and 450 hp when modified for racing. Because of the small engine and huge turbo, the car suffered from low rpm lag, which made it difficult to drive and therefore less competitive.

The RS200 reached the podium at the 1986 Rally Sweden, but only one event later, the RS200 took part in one of the most exciting events in WRC history, taking the lives of three spectators. Another RS200 had a crash at the Rally Germany in the same year, killing the co-driver. These accidents forced Ford to make changes, resulting in an evolution of 850 horsepower from the upgraded 2.1-liter engine. The car was never raced as the FIA ​​suspended the Group B race.
RELATED: Rally Icons: Ford RS200 vs. Audi Sport Quattro

1 Porsche – 959

The Porsche 959 was another car built specifically to compete in Group B racing, but as with the Ford RS200 Evo2, the class was discontinued before the car could compete. The 959 is a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter flat-6 that produces 444 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. Because of race regulations, the race car needed homologation, so Porsche built 337 road copies, which had an official top speed of 197 mph.

With the event built to cancel, the 959 entered the 1986 Paris-Dakar Rally, finishing first, second and sixth. Another race version of the 959, the 961, was built to compete at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1986. The car returned in 1987 but failed to finish due to a fire that destroyed its rear end. Since then, the Porsche 959 has become legendary and has proudly taken its place in the list of the fastest production cars.


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