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Old 21 May 2003, 21:04 (Ref:606297)   #1
JAG
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JAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridJAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridJAG should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
'Small' WRC cars to end?

The WRC manufactuers are in discussions to increase the minimum length of WRC cars to stop smaller cars like the 206, Fiesta etc. becoming WRC cars.

Ironically its coming at a time when Peugeut are switching to the larger 307 and Ford has shown a larger car, in the Focus can compete with and beat the smaller 206.

Increases to the weight of the cars shell and rollcage, (minimun weight of the car as a whole is unchanged), are also influencing manufactuers to use more medium size cars as there is no longer the benefit of having a small lightweight shell in order to be able to use more ballest. Might as well use a larger shell as Peugeot will be doing with the 307 rather than adding weight to the smaller 206 shell in order to meet the minimum shell/rollcage weight.
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Old 21 May 2003, 22:41 (Ref:606363)   #2
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I prescribe medium size cars (Vectra ish) running rwd with 2.5 litre V6's rev-limited at 9000rpm.

They be safer, slower and more entertaining to watch. More manufacturers could enter and they'd sound unreal...
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Old 21 May 2003, 23:00 (Ref:606383)   #3
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I prescribe medium size cars (Vectra ish) running rwd with 2.5 litre V6's rev-limited at 9000rpm.

They be safer, slower and more entertaining to watch. More manufacturers could enter and they'd sound unreal...
When they say medium size cars they mean Focus, 307 size not touring car types cars such as the Mondeo or Vectra, although you could run one if you so wished. Touring cars cater for the larger family cars. Rallying is used to promote small hatchbacks in S1600 and Medium size Focus, Impreza, 307 type cars in WRC.

I like the turbo engines but wouldn't be against 2.5 V6s although many manufactuers do not have these engines and cannot adapt current engines like they can with the current regs, were you can just stick a turbo on an everyday 2l 4 cylinder engine.

I think 4wd drive is essential for gravel cars nowadays after 20+ years of having it. Plus the drivers and teams think 4wd is much safer as you can drag yourself out of trouble. Plus how many rwd cars are out there now from manufactuers. Seems most small and medium cars are fwd or 4wd apart from the C-class and 3-series.

See link below:-

http://www.worldrallynews.com/cgi-bi...3442264,88782,

Last edited by JAG; 21 May 2003 at 23:06.
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Old 21 May 2003, 23:06 (Ref:606390)   #4
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If they are allowed to build an AWD from a FWD, then doing a RWD should not be a bother.

Yes you are right about AWD being entrenched though...but the sooner they drop the shopping basket sized cars and run something a bit more substantial the better.
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Old 21 May 2003, 23:34 (Ref:606409)   #5
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If they are allowed to build an AWD from a FWD, then doing a RWD should not be a bother.

Yes you are right about AWD being entrenched though...but the sooner they drop the shopping basket sized cars and run something a bit more substantial the better.
I know what you mean about awd and rwd, but if they were to be 2wd theres no doubt it would be fwd not rwd. Afterall S1600 could in theory be a rwd formula but the manufactuers insist on fwd as these are the cars they sell.

The top WRC class will always have 4wd as it is entrenched, it is safer and is what many manufactuers use in there road cars.
Maybe not the road car version of the cars they run as a WRC but in there stable of cars as a whole. Afterall look at the huge number of 4wd in the VAG group, if not Skoda at this particular time.

But as I've said before the WRC class is not about promoting a single car, but a brand and the technology this brand is developing for its road cars, just as in F1 and LM prototypes.

Saying that there has been a huge increase in the number of both 4wd and turbo cars in recent years after a major downturn in the early to mid-nineties.

I thik 4wd is know being use more in road cars as a safety feature and performance enhancing as many of the problems associated with 4wd in the past have been overcome and in return you get great traction and roadholding. As for turbos, smaller engines performance is boosted in a relatively environmentally friendly and cheap way. Plus theres the ultimate rally specials and sportscars.

Last edited by JAG; 21 May 2003 at 23:38.
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Old 22 May 2003, 00:10 (Ref:606424)   #6
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The whole "promotion" angle is where they've missed the target. These idiots want to show off their budgets, rather than actually put the cars they sell to the test!

Rallying is _not_ F1, and there shouldn't be specialized cars out on the stages... The whole sport developed as a torture test for production vehicles. If you want to build prototypes, go on the rally raids.

The fact is that AWD became more popular under Group A rules, but is now no longer being used as a selling point by anyone but Audi and Subaru!

Last edited by Lee Janotta; 22 May 2003 at 00:12.
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Old 22 May 2003, 00:42 (Ref:606439)   #7
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I can see both sides of the argument here (I own an AWD Subaru) but would still prefer to see the spectacle of RWD - especially on tarmac.

Rallying producton based cars would be good, but leads to the old homologation/cost issue and restricts manufacturers.

If rally does go through another evolution due to the speed and safety issues (group B all over again), I'd like to see RWD in larger cars using larger naturally aspirated engines (the formula advocated above is just one possible permutation - bigger engines would be even better - say 3.5 litre V6's )

You just have to look at all the classic car tarmac rallys (eg in Australia: Targa Tasmania or Classic Adelaide) to see how exciting RWD can be. Imagine that with the top teams and drivers - wooo hoooo
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Old 22 May 2003, 10:47 (Ref:606665)   #8
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I agree with Lee about the manufacturers no longer promoting the cars but instead emphasising the brand. You can buy 4wd Subarus Mitsubishis and Skodas. When Gpa 4wd you had a chice of Mazda 323 or Lancia Integrale. I owned two mazdas because I couldn't afford an Integrale.
Subaru and Mitsubishi have cornered the market and sold thousands of cars. Why don't the other manufacturers see the opportunity? And why do Audi not want to get their cars dirty?
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Old 22 May 2003, 15:01 (Ref:606940)   #9
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Dani Filth should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridDani Filth should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridDani Filth should be qualifying in the top 5 on the grid
vectra ...??? Mondeo .. those cars have aprox. 4.7 m .. i say those type of cars are to big ... . i say a limit of 4.2 like in ETCC(if i remember it corectly) ...
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Old 22 May 2003, 17:28 (Ref:607067)   #10
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The whole "promotion" angle is where they've missed the target. These idiots want to show off their budgets, rather than actually put the cars they sell to the test!

Rallying is _not_ F1, and there shouldn't be specialized cars out on the stages... The whole sport developed as a torture test for production vehicles. If you want to build prototypes, go on the rally raids.

The fact is that AWD became more popular under Group A rules, but is now no longer being used as a selling point by anyone but Audi and Subaru!
The people who were showing of there budgets wre Lancia and Toyota in the Group A days. No-one else could get a look in. Group A was Hugely expensive and no one could afford it apart from Lancia and Toyota. Even Ford were struggling to keep up.

If you look at rallying history speciallized cars have competed in rallying sinze the early '70s, stratos anyone. The difference is now rather than building protoype road cars for rallying, increasing costs, they can add performance parts to the rally car only.

As for 4wd road cars, they are making a big comeback. There sre Audi, VW, Mitsubishi, Subaru, Ford (new Focus Cosworth), Skoda, Volvo etc.
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Old 22 May 2003, 18:52 (Ref:607134)   #11
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Which is why Tommi Makkinen has all those Group A championships, right? Lancia never had a huge budget, and they stopped meaningful development years before they quit.

Ford and Skoda will make just very short production runs with all-wheel drive, VW has embraced then abandoned it as they feel the market dictates, and Volvo has offered it for years. But aside from Ford and VW, you're looking at a tiny fraction of the automotive market.

And what did the Stratos have most to fear? The nearly stock Escort, of all things!

The rally specials didn't really start until Audi started exploiting the Group B rules, which brought out the prototypes from Lancia, MG, Ford and Peugeot in quick succession.

Your logic is cyclical: You claim that because prototypes currently dominate rallying, that any future rally car must be a prototype!

I maintain that these prototypes serve no purpose, and that extremely high homologation numbers would destroy both the prototypes and the specials, leaving rallying to regular production vehicles such as those seen on rallies like Targa Tasmania.
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Old 22 May 2003, 22:40 (Ref:607281)   #12
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"nearly stock Escort" You are way off the mark there. The Escort RS was based on the RS 1800 which was a homologation special with the BDA engine. Very small amounts of those were built.
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Old 23 May 2003, 00:48 (Ref:607338)   #13
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True, the MkII RS1800 had a very special engine, but most everything else on the car could be pulled right off an RS2000. You can't say that of any Group B, Group A, or WRC car.
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Old 24 May 2003, 12:21 (Ref:608640)   #14
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Which is why Tommi Makkinen has all those Group A championships, right? Lancia never had a huge budget, and they stopped meaningful development years before they quit.

Ford and Skoda will make just very short production runs with all-wheel drive, VW has embraced then abandoned it as they feel the market dictates, and Volvo has offered it for years. But aside from Ford and VW, you're looking at a tiny fraction of the automotive market.

And what did the Stratos have most to fear? The nearly stock Escort, of all things!

The rally specials didn't really start until Audi started exploiting the Group B rules, which brought out the prototypes from Lancia, MG, Ford and Peugeot in quick succession.

Your logic is cyclical: You claim that because prototypes currently dominate rallying, that any future rally car must be a prototype!

I maintain that these prototypes serve no purpose, and that extremely high homologation numbers would destroy both the prototypes and the specials, leaving rallying to regular production vehicles such as those seen on rallies like Targa Tasmania.

Makinan won his championships after Lancia withdrew. Lancias budget was huge, with only Toyota able to match it. Lancia had the Group A 4wd Delta ready before the Group B season had even finished. They were also able to build 5000 new homologation specials each year with updates to the car, unlike Ford, Nissan etc.

Lancia were the first with the rally specials with the Stratos. Rally specials were around well before the 80s.Remember all of the Opels, Fiats, Fords etc. Just look at cars such as the Lotus Talbot, Lotus Cortina etc.

I'm not saying homologation specials are not superb road cars, they are.

But rallying as a sport suffers through homologation, just as touring cars and GT racing has done in the past. Rallying should not be used as a source of performance road cars. Its a sport that needs stable regulations and a fare playing field.

Its true that in the early 90s without the specials there would have been very few truly exciting road cars, but I truly believe this is changing and manufactuers are producing cars that are equal too and even better than the specials.

The Lancer and Subaru no longer need to be produced for rallying. Group N is still around but will soon be replaced by WRC2. However Subaru and Mitsubishi are still producing these cars as there is a demand, particularly for trck days.

Due to this situation Ford produced the Focus RS and are going to produce the Focus Cosworth 4wd which will be more extreme than any production WRX or EVO. Every week more extreme performance cars are being announced and I do not doubt we will see 4wd specials from the Peugeot/Citroen group based on the 307 and new Xsara in the coming years as they will have to compete with Ford etc. in the marketplace.
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Old 24 May 2003, 13:05 (Ref:608654)   #15
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I think we should just agree to disagree and enjoy what great rallying there is out there WRC, production, classic, targa tasmania etc.
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