The Rally Fighter was a vehicle designed on the internet during a competition held by Local Motors. The person with the best design (as decided by online votes) got to be the man behind the car. What they ended up with was a car powered by a Corvette engine with a Chevy transmission, a Ford truck rear end with Honda Civic taillights, Mazda Miata door handles, and an F150 steering wheel. This is a big melting pot of a car and the 430 HP engine and killer suspension make it one heckuva ride.
Off-roading can be just as challenging, scary and life-changing as a high-speed track session with a supercar .
With supercars, the chances of a costly mistake are present but manageable. The tracks are typically perfect, the guard rails are there to keep you out of the trees in the case of a spin out, and generally, backing off the throttle is enough to recover control before anything goes *crunch*.
Off-roading, however, brings a real chance that poor driving or the wrong car will result in serious damage to both that driver’s confidence and the car’s rolling ability.
While most racetracks are filled with other cars to help you get home after putting yours into a wall, the situation out on desolate off-road trails is much more grim is something really breaks. Being stranded becomes a real possibility, with bad results almost a sure thing.
After popping three tires and cracking an alloy rim of the 18-inch wheels and 35-section tires of my (poor, abused) Subaru Legacy GT wagon in Oak Ridge, Tennessee a few years ago, I had to limp down the mountain on two hideously-bent donut spare steel wheels. Tires sheared off long before, so it was a clunky and scary ride to a place that a tow truck could find me.
It was this moment I finally realized something: as with everything challenging, to go off-roading the right way, you need the right tools.
Those tools have adjustable suspensions, huge wheel travel, and tires so knobby that a 65 mph cruise on the highway sounds like a Monster Truck.
Great A/C, comfy seats and mechanical reliability are also key parameters for this list.
The Local Motors Rally Fighter is still going strong two years after the first deliveries of this 2000-unit purpose-built off-road racer’s production run. With 50-state compliance on lighting and emissions, the road-legal Rally Fighter runs a 6.2-liter V-8 to the giant rear wheels before reaching a tire-limited top speed of 131 mph.
Available for special orders from anywhere on the globe, the Rally Fighter is one of the most unique and exciting launch models from a new manufacturer. Outside the muddy ruts of the English countryside and the mutant Land Rovers , like the Bowler EXR-S and RallyRaid DW3 , most new supercar ventures are focused on the 6-lane drag strips of central Dubai.
Local Motors takes a totally different path, with its unique engineering and prototype method leveraging the passion and skills of the internet to draw in R&D talent from across the world.
The result is a steel space frame and crash cage that looks Armageddon-proof, and suspension travel and off-road prowess to stop a 2014 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor Special Edition in its tracks. The final piece of the Rally Fighter puzzle is this: styling so otherworldly that it causes more of a stir in traffic than taking the Gravedigger monster truck to the grocery store.
Click past the jump for the full review of the 2013 Local Motors Rally Fighter, including a mega image gallery, links to the new online configurator, and info on how to order your own custom version of this off-road beast.
You only achieve a certain level of respect from the rest of the automotive world when you somehow end up in a precarious situation and, instead of letting a crash get the worst of you, you rise above it and soldier on.
That’s exactly what happened to the people behind the wheel of this Local Motors Rally Fighter . During the recent Parker 425 off-road race in Arizona last week, as the driver of the Rally Fighter somehow performs a memorable front somersault after hitting a bump on the desert trail. The Rally Fighter initially landed on its rear after the 360-degree flip and somehow, thanks to gravity, the racer got back up on all fours and sped away detached hood and all, as if the whole scene was planned all along.
Now, that’s how you turn a potentially horrific crash into an episode people will be talking about for years to come!
For a man who probably has just about any kind of vehicle created, it still must have been pretty cool for Jay Leno to welcome a vehicle like the Local Motors’ Rally Fighter. to his garage.
Looking the part of an SUV with features coming from a variety of other vehicles, including a Corvette engine with a Chevy transmission, a Ford truck rear end with Honda Civic taillights, Mazda Miata door handles, and an F-150 steering wheel. Talk about a melting pot of a rally racer.
Another unique quality of the Rally Fighter is that Local Motors builds each of these models with the help of the people buying the actual cars. That factor, in itself, allows the person who signs the check to have some level of control on how he wants the car built.
As for Jay, well, he always seems to find something interesting to say about the cars that make an appearance at his garage. This one isn’t any different. Check out this rather interesting episode of Jay Leno’s garage by clicking on the video above!
You know those build-your-own kit cars that all of us loved when we were kids? How would you feel if we told you that you could relive those old memories on a real vehicle that’s the definite personification of a bad-ass ride?
We first saw Local Motors’ Rally Fighter at SEMA a few years ago where it predictably caught the attention of many a heads while flaunting its awesomeness during the event in Las Vegas. Since then, the Rally Fighter has become one of the most unique car purchases you can ever have, complete with the opportunity to help build the car from the ground up.
The futuristic off-roader is a self proclaimed "premium, authentic off-road experience, custom designed and built for the deserts of the American Southwest." Even better than that is the fact that this machine is completely street legal and is actually 50-state-emissions compliant.
Don’t mistake it for a bare-as-bones niche vehicle that is catered only to a specific market. The Rally Fighter is an all-purpose ride that commands serious attention from just about all walks of life.
Speaking for ourselves, we’d certainly want to have one to call our own someday.
Find out more on the Rally Fighter after the jump.