The Toyota Celica GT – Four was Toyota's flagship road going rally car that was developed to compete in the World Rally Championship (WRC) and was the first Japanese manufactured AWD turbocharged car to compete in the championship.
The Toyota GT – Four paved the way for other Japanese car manufacturers to enter their own developed cars in the following years such as Subaru with the Impreza and Mitsubishi with Lancer Evolution, both of which have since become very successful road going rally cars!
Regulations state that car manufacturers wishing to compete in the World Rally Championship have to produce a certain quantity of road going versions of their competition car. As a result, three generations of this iconic high performance, turbocharged AWD car were produced from 1986 through 1999: the ST165 (1986 – 1989), the ST185 (Super Round Shape - 1989 – 1993) and the ST205 (1994 – 1999)
Many examples of the GT – Four have been modified, yet there are still a significant number of standard and unmolested examples around, along with some very good Japanese imports. Prices vary but you can purchase a good condition example for around £4,000 - £10,000 depending on model, specification, age and condition etc…
The Porsche 944 was produced from 1982 – 1991. Although based on the older 924, the 944 is far more refined; it is faster, better equipped and has improved handling and braking, thus making for a far more comfortable drive. It is also the first car to have both driver and passenger airbags.
The distinctively wide arches and aerodynamic body give the car the instantly recognisable, timeless and iconic shape, something that helps a car become a classic. Unlike many other front engined sports cars, the Porsche 944 is extremely well balanced thanks to improved suspension and near perfect weight distribution which improves the traction and handling .
Several different models of the 944 were released. The original 944 came with a naturally aspirated 2.5 litre engine. In 1985 the 944 received an overhaul which included an extensive list of improvements, both cosmetic and performance based. In the same year the 944 Turbo was released, due to the increased power it was fitted with the superior breaks fitted in the 911.
1987 saw the release of the 944 S which benefited from an improved engine and several other modifications. In 1989 Porsche introduced a redeveloped 2.7 litre engine. Later in the same year the 944 S2 was released with a 3.0 litre, 16-valve engine. In 1991 Porsche released the 944 Turbo cabriolet, this model is extremely rare - only 100 right hand drive vehicles were made for the UK.
Today a good example can be purchased for around £2,500 - £6,000 depending on year, model and mileage etc…
The original version of the Quattro was released in the UK in March 1981. A total of 163 were shipped from Germany, however, they were all left hand drive. It was not until the end of October 1982 that Audi announced that they would produce the Quattro as a right hand drive vehicle.
The legendary Audi Ur - Quattro is a road going rally car with an exceptional pedigree, it was the first rally car to utilise a four wheel drive system and also the first car to incorporate both four wheel drive and a turbocharger. This engineering marvel made the Audi Quattro untouchable on the world rally scene for several years, it just kept winning rally after rally!
The Audi Quattro had three different engines over the years; the original model had a turbocharged 2.1 litre 10 valve engine, enabling it to accelerate from 0 – 62 mph in 7.1 second and giving it a top speed of around 137 mph.
This was then uprated to a 2.2 litre 10 valve and later a 20 valve version of the engine which gave the Quattro a higher top speed of 143 mph.
Many Quattro aficionados refer to the specific car model by using the engine codes: WR Quattro for the 2.1 litre 10 valve, MB Quattro for the 2.2 litre 10 valve and RR Quattro for the 2.2 litre 20 valve. Knowing this can be helpful when considering the purchase of one of these pieces of motorsport history.
The price of a new Audi Quattro in 1989 was c. £32,000 (DM96,200).
Today a good condition Quattro can be acquired for around £7,000 - £30,000 depending on the model, year and mileage. Occasionally ex rally cars do come up for sale, the prices can vary significantly depending on the history of the individual car.
All BMW M models are awesome machines, be it the M3, M5, M6 or the new compact M1.They are an unparalleled combination of luxury, comfort, style and raw, yet refined power. Unfortunately, from a collector's point of view, the majority of the models have been mass produced.
However, some limited editions have been released, which due to their rarity make them very desirable and also excellent investment opportunities. The E46 M3 CLS only came in two colours; silver or black, and only 1,400 were produced, but it is definitely one of the highly desirable future classics.
CSL is an abbreviation of Coupe Sport Leichtbau, which is German for Lightweight Sport Coupé. The car is 110 kg lighter than the standard M3 of the series, weighing in at just 1,385kg. To achieve this weight loss, many “Creature Comforts” that you might expect in a BMW, have been removed. The air conditioning, sat-nav, stereo, electric seats etc...
The body panels are made from carbon fibre and even some of the windows are thinner than usual, all to aid with the weight reduction. Purposely developed suspension significantly improves handling, and the engine received several upgrades to increase power output. The CSL also came with a Formula One like transmission, allowing for gear changes in 0.08 seconds.
The BMW M3 E46 CSL are extremely rare due to the limited number of cars produced. However, good examples do come on the market and can be purchased from around £13,000+
The Jaguar XK8 is a rear wheel drive Grand Tourer (GT) and is the replacement for the older Jaguar XJS range. Released in 1996, the XK8 remained in production up until 2006, it is the first generation of the Jaguar XK series and is built on the same platform as the Aston Martin DB7. The XK8 is available in two body styles, either as a two door coupé or as a two door convertible.
From 1996 until 1998 the XK8 was powered by a naturally aspirated 4.0 litre – V8 DOHC petrol engine. The Jaguar XKR was introduced in 1998, using the same engine as the XK8 but benefiting from being supercharged. In 2003 both the XK8 and the XKR received a new 4.2-litre V8 engine and a 6 speed gearbox.
As with all Jaguar motor cars, quality comes as standard, the interior on both the XK8 and the XKR is all leather with burl walnut trim. These luxury cars came fully loaded with the latest technology and features. With the stylishly sleek and classic body styling, they are instantly recognisable and a real head turner, some enthusiasts draw comparisons between the early XK models and the classic E – Type.
Both the naturally aspirated version and the supercharged models have more than enough power for an excitable drive on country lanes and track days, whilst still being refined for the longer and more relaxed journey and they return an acceptable mpg. Space, grace and pace!
Good examples of the XK8 and XKR can be purchased today for around £3,500 - £10,000
The 8 Series was designed as a supercar to compete with the likes of the Porsche 928, Mercedes CL600 and other similar vehicles. All 8 Series models came with either a V8 or V12 engine.
Throughout production (1990 – 1999) four standard models were released; the 840ci, 850i, 850ci and the 850csi. All models were limited to a top speed of 155 mph and came fully loaded with the latest technology. Other limited edition models were produced and Alpina also released two highly tuned versions; the 5.0 litre B12 5.0 and the awesome 5.7 litre B12.
Today the awesome BMW 8 Series still looks incredible and has the power to match most cars on the road. A good example of this genuine piece of motoring history can be purchased for around £6,000- £27,000 depending on the model, mileage, specification and overall general condition.