Two incredible Group B rallying icons to drool over this November
Silverstone Auction's sale on November 13th has plenty of tempting rally cars to bid on, here are our two favourites from motorsport’s monstrous Group B era.
When asked to name an iconic rally car, it is most likely you will reel off a car that will have campaigned in the 1980s, the decade when rallying became one of the world’s most popular forms of motorsports, thanks to the flame spitting turbocharged Group B cars. Group B was introduced in 1982 and Renault were one of the first on the scene with the Renault 5 Turbo. Originally built to Group 4 regulations and campaigned by Jean Ragnotti, they won the 1981 Monte Carlo rally becoming the first turbo car to win a WRC event. By 1982 and the arrival of the new regulations, the 1400cc Renault was a little out gunned by the dominant Audi Quattro. The Renault was no slouch though and showed its agile talents with a 1982 victory on the sticky asphalt of the Tour de Corse - again at the hands of Ragnotti. Renault would have to wait another three years before they would see another victory, with the upgraded Maxi Turbo in 1985.
This particular Renault 5 Turbo (Chassis B0000454), was delivered new to Renault's dealership in Chartres, immediately they set about preparing the car for competition. The car was well campaigned in period over three years with some factory support helping development. Its biggest success was a fourth overall on the 1984 Monte-Carlo rally at the hands of Jean-Luc Thérier and his co-driver Michel Vial.
Very much late to the Group B party was the Metro 6R4, Britain’s attempt to take on Lancia, Audi and Peugeot who were by now dominating the rally scene. By November 1985 question marks already surrounded the safety and future of Group B, Tony Pond and Malcolm Wilson debuted two 6R4s on the Lombard RAC Rally – the final rally of the season. Wilson was running well in the top ten, but ultimately had to retire – reliability had already slowed development of the car. Tony Pond however took several stage wins and finished 3rd overall behind the all-new Lancia S4s. A promising start for the Metro, sadly this would become the marques most successful result. By the middle of the 1986 season - after a series of incidents - Group B was finished, the FIA banning the category for 1987.
This car is the second most successful 6R4 produced, registered in 1986 and recording 4th place on the Rallye Sanremo at the hands of Malcolm Wilson. C99 KOG has always been British owned and has had a full mechanical rebuild, while the exterior has been preserved with its original Group B battle scars. Rally cars continue to gain popularity, achieving prices that represent their true value and you can expect to see this example sell very well. View the lots for a closer look and the chance to peruse the full catalogue.