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What makes a good rally car?

Posted by billp 
billp
bill peters
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What makes a good rally car?
July 16, 2007 11:29PM
Like the title says "What makes a good rally car?"

I've searched the forums here and elsewhere, I'm not looking for get this car or that car but the nuts and bolts of it.

Not even the dreaded but always entertaining fwd vs rwd vs awd issue.

But dimensions and the like. please also suggest which class of car you are referring to.


wheelbase

front vs rear vs mid winking smiley engine


wheel sizes

etc...


Thanks, Bill


P.S. 1st post so Hiya,Hello,and Howdy....
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derek
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 16, 2007 11:58PM
Any car can be a good rally car, with the application of money time and brains.

Having driven a few cars in anger down rally roads I would say predicable and confidance inspireing are very high on the list of important traits. Strong is also key - others would call that reliable.

One factor that is often over looked - the car should be fun, the driver should like driving it because it will cost a lot of money to earn the right to spend the time behind the wheel so it better return a lot of smiles per mile.

One question you ask is easy wheels should be 15" this is the size you can get lots of good tires for and has room for brakes on gravel. There are 16" rally tires but they are rare and cost much more then 15" rally tires. There are also 14" tyres but they are very limited in compound, treads, widths etc as almost everyone uses 15" tyres.

Most people think around 100 inches is right but it is not a proven fact you need to be there. No one has had a winning effort in mid or rear engine except the factories since the days the 911 or Renult Alpine. (IE if you spend huge amounts of money mid engine cars work).

High center of gravity things like trucks and SUV's have never done that well and the public comments of the factory teams tell us that they are going to massive efforts to lower the center of gravity in the cars. We likely do not wish to go to that extreme but I would not try a Sicon B or Toyota Matrix (or a H3/Rav4/Explorer/tundra etc) as they are rather tall and handling does count for something. Besides the slab sides of the B will make it much harder to put back on its feet after tipping over!

OK have fun.

Derek







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hudson
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 17, 2007 12:14AM
What Derek said was spot on, I was going to say that's a very dogmatic question and it could be argued to the cows come home. It sounds like it's your first foray into rally and all I would add is pick a car that has been done before. Cheapness of parts and cars is a bonus. And as Derek said, a low centre of gravity is obviously a given.



Andrew M
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Pete
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 17, 2007 06:29AM
derek Wrote:
> No
> one has had a winning effort in mid or rear engine
> except the factories since the days the 911 or
> Renult Alpine. (IE if you spend huge amounts of
> money mid engine cars work).

Maybe that's because, with two or three exceptions, mid-engined and rear-engined cars are incredibly expensive to begin with.

Sure, there are MR2s (cramped, weak) and Super Beetles (hard to find, cramped) but beyond that... the papers aren't brimming with cheap 037s.






Pete Remner
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Phlyan Pan
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 17, 2007 10:19AM
) and Super
> Beetles (hard to find, cramped)
>
>
>
>
> Pete Remner
> Cleveland, Ohio
>
> 1984 RX-7 reshell
> 1978


Cramped...maybe a little. But super beetles aren't hard to find. There's like eleventy billion of them in the world. And parts are quite cheap compared to a lot of other options.

Now if you're saying that super beetles already made into rally cars are hard to find...yeah you're probably right. But the car itself is still very easily located considering how long it's been since they were sold in the US.



"Time to unpimp ze auuto."





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hudson
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 17, 2007 11:18AM
Pete Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> the papers aren't brimming with cheap 037s.

What about a Stratos replica.. they aren't free, but not super expensive. Of course you would have to get it shipped from Britain/Europe.



Andrew M
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randyzimmer
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 17, 2007 12:08PM
Do you mean picking a make and model or building up?
In other series, you go wheel to wheel and you can easily see where you are good and others are better - but not in rally.
Even there, if VanDiemens make up 30 of the 32 cars in the race, you'd better be pretty good at figuring things out to run a different chassis!
If you are starting out, you don't know shit about shit so when your Super Beetle needs a part or you need to know if, "is it normal to veer right every time I hit the brakes?" no one will know and be able to say, "yeah, I have one of those" or "yeah, they all do that" like if you're using what everyone else has.
If you get really good and have a budget, sure! Blow it on a science project, it just may be a world-beater. But be prepared for going it alone on every facet of package.
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Pete
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 17, 2007 06:14PM
Phlyan Pan Wrote:
>
> Cramped...maybe a little. But super beetles
> aren't hard to find. There's like eleventy
> billion of them in the world. And parts are quite
> cheap compared to a lot of other options.

True on the "cheap", but jeez. Ever since the New Beetle came out, everyone thinks their rotted out aircooled with no heater channels and the passenger seat leaning against the door (ahem) is a collector's item worth $1000-1500. Anything not sorely in need of a new everything seems to be $3k and up.

Even I can find XR4Tis and other, better things for far, far less.

That said, they do have a nice combination of light weight, thrusty grip, and light weight.





Pete Remner
Cleveland, Ohio

1984 RX-7 (rallycross thing)
1978
Silence is golden, but duct tape is silver.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/17/2007 06:16PM by Pete.
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hoche
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 17, 2007 08:55PM
Replicas are not allowed in R-A. Dunno about CARS. Something like the Stratos (which had the rollbar integrated in the chassis) would be especially hard to get teched, too. Besides, they're known to be terribly cramped and twitchy.



Self-righteous douche canoe
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david amor
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 18, 2007 02:59AM
This topic just gets beaten to death and it becomes a little tiring even reading the same thing over and over. Not that I never asked the same thing. Read Randys post carefully (and you can kinda tell by his "tone" that he's a bit tired of answering this since he's probably answered it for 20 or 30 years) It's pretty simple; look at the cars people are having sucess with. Define sucess however you like- winning, reliability most fun etc- and then look at what makes THOSE cars good. But I like how JVL said it best:

"Its so common when folks say "I want to do something different (or "original"winking smiley" I say "Yeah? Then DRIVE the car GOOD."



Gone fishing
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Rich Smith
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LIGHT WEIGHT + Good Power/Weight Ratio
July 18, 2007 07:31PM
For myself, there is no substitute for a LIGHT WEIGHT rallycar:

- Something in the 2,000-2500 lb range is very attainable in 2WD.
- Something in the 170-220 HP range is also pretty easy.
- Something low tech for dependablility.

Most light weight cars can be made to handle well and predictably.
Changing out the OEM suspension is a given.

Rich Smith

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NoCoast
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Re: LIGHT WEIGHT + Good Power/Weight Ratio
July 20, 2007 02:53PM
http://www.rengaskanava.fi/mikakiracing/mikakiracing-kouvola2007-ek1.wmv

http://www.rengaskanava.fi/mikakiracing/rallycars.php

First in Group F at a National event in Finland on the car's premiere event.

Used V6 models are going for around $3500 here.

Of course, one has to spend another $20,000 on gearbox, diff, and suspension, but it'd be a Golf killer.



Grant Hughes
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derek
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 20, 2007 05:28PM
BMW is still using inline 6. Interesting to see they are using the stock motor, that should be dependable.

Good for them winning the first time out in the car. Not sure they have $20k of extra stuff in that, the gearbox is likely $3k the suspenssion $4-5k Cage etc $4k Brakes $3k Looks to me like less then $15,000 using all new bits The same as any rally car.

Wonder if RA would let you enter it into PGT and Gp5? That way you could get two trophys?







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NoCoast
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 20, 2007 07:23PM
Yeah, but you'd have to import it all and the exchange rate is fucking poop. I forgot to type brakes, but I was thinking it, which adds another probably 4ish with AP/Alcon stuff.

>Looks to me like less then $15,000 using all new bits The same as any rally car.

I was telling my wife that just the other day how it doesn't really matter which car, you're going to spend around $15K.



Grant Hughes
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nick the brit
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Re: LIGHT WEIGHT + Good Power/Weight Ratio
July 20, 2007 08:51PM
NoCoast Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------


http://www.rengaskanava.fi/mikakiracing/rallycars.php

lol at the description of the BMW Dash

"Shed Fluff Dashboard"





Nick Taylor.
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Pete
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Re: LIGHT WEIGHT + Good Power/Weight Ratio
July 20, 2007 08:52PM
NoCoast Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> >
>
>
> First in Group F at a National event in Finland on
> the car's premiere event.
>
> Used V6 models are going for around $3500 here.
>

$3500 for an M3? WHERE?

The "M3" part is very important. Also note that Euro-spec M3 models had vastly better engines than US-spec. US-spec were little more than hotted up 325i engines, in order to get the price down since they didn't think Americans would pay $50k for a Dreier.

Euro-spec were 300+hp independent throttle beasties, basically the engine that we got with the E46 when BMW realized that for all the money they were spending making two different M3 models, they could just give us the good stuff at close to the same price.



Pete Remner
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NoCoast
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Re: LIGHT WEIGHT + Good Power/Weight Ratio
July 20, 2007 09:27PM
Not an M3. As you said, the M3 was just a built 325 engine so why bother. Plus, regardless of what shell you get, your going to want to swap to the Euro spec M3 engine aforementioned so why not get the cheap 318 or 325 shell? One would definitely need the 5th gear though for US events.



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derek
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 21, 2007 10:40AM
Right a good point for the thread, if you are going to take a car and change the motor, the brakes, the seats, the gearbox, the dif, the struts, the rims, the lights etc there is no reason to pay for the fancy model. I rallyed a Golf GL since there was no reason to pay more for the GTI body since the only thing I kept was the bumpers, sheet metal and glass, basically everything else was messed with.

So add $3000 for a stock M3 motor from over there where they get more grunt.

Though I think more brakes is always better I found that the fairly modest brakes I but on the Golf worked just fine with very good pads and BMW's have much better brakes then that even on the budget models.

If I build one I would cage it, change the diff and susspend it with real good struts then go rally. After a few events I would decided if I need more power, more gearing or more brakes.

Derek





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Jay
Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 21, 2007 02:00PM
Damn near always need more brakes. good plan, waiting to see if you need more power. Brakes, then gearing...



Jay Woodward
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CharlieV
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 21, 2007 08:08PM
I'd guess more than 15,000 the sellholm box is probably half that or more.
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derek
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 22, 2007 07:31PM
I have not idea what a selholm box cost for a BMW but for my golf with Limited slip the dog box was about 4500 Euros in 2002. I think that came with a nice final drive too. Given that it is a RWD thing I would expect there are gear kits in that price range for some gear box that will fit.





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CharlieV
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 22, 2007 11:06PM
My guess was that it is completly designed sequential gearbox not just a dog gearkit.
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hoche
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 24, 2007 01:36AM
That seems cheap to me, actually. The last quote I got from Selholm was over $7K (US) for a complete gearbox for a MkII Golf. That was in 2005.



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john vanlandingham
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 24, 2007 09:54AM
hoche Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> That seems cheap to me, actually. The last quote I
> got from Selholm was over $7K (US) for a complete
> gearbox for a MkII Golf. That was in 2005.


US Dollar to Swedish Kr exchange has sunk by approximately 45% since Dereks prices in favor of the SvKr.
Add normal Swedish inflation at 4-5% per year and you sheet the bed at the price increase.

But don't worry, US Exports such as Boeing and Archer-Daniels-Midlands are just happy as pigs in a quagmire, record sales.
You're either for Profits or with the terr'ists.





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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/24/2007 09:55AM by john vanlandingham.
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derek
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Re: What makes a good rally car?
July 24, 2007 06:19PM
Do not forget that oil and airplans are also sold in US $'s thus keeping the $ week hurts Airbus and Evil Middle East Regemes who both now need to sell their product for $ even as their cost of inputs are sold in Euros...

But remember a major factor in the weak $ is most of us buying TV's, Gameboxes, etc and not saving.



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