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rally cars

Ken Block promised a return to roots for Gymkhana 5 and judging by the first trailer of the highly-anticipated video, the man wasn’t lying.

Not that it needs any more teasing, but Ken Block and his peeps still decided to go that route with Gymkhana 5, providing us with a 37-second appetizer of what we’re all in store for.

Block is already on record saying that Gymkhana 5 will leave the theatrics of Gymkhana 4 behind in order to concentrate on bringing it back to the kind of action-packed, tire-screeching, rubber-burning stunts we’ve become accustomed to.

This time, Block brought his trusty Ford Fiesta H.F.H.V. rally racer to the streets of San Francisco, where it laid waste to a whole load of things, including a barge.

Confused? Check out the video and find out!

Don’t forget, the video debuts on July 9, at which point, we’ll be glued to our monitors waiting in earnest for it to drop.

The Toyota PPI Trophy Trucks are often referred to as one of the most significant trucks in off-road history, and rightfully so. The partnership between Toyota and Precision Preparation Inc. (PPI) resulted in 27 wins and seven championships in the now-defunct Mickey Thompson Off-Road Stadium Series, and who can forget the fact that the best of the best in off-roading, Ivan “Ironman” Stewart, was a part of this team.

The example we have today, the 1994 Toyota PPI Trophy Truck 015, was the final truck built under the Toyota/PPI partnership. To make this truck even more desirable, Ivan Stewart himself piloted it at the Baja 2000.

This fine truck has just come off of a restoration and RK Motors Charlotte is giving you the opportunity to own this piece of off-road history. We are certain this freshly revamped off-roading legend is going to require a premium price.

To find out more about this truck and its asking price, click past the jump.

The agreement between Land Rover and Bowler is poised to become a collaboration made in rallying heaven and they’re putting their collective feet out to show their first project together, the Bowler EXR Rally Car.

The prototype rally car will sport a ‘Powered by Land Rover’ branding and has been co-designed by Land Rover and Bowler to be the kind of rally car that will put all others to shame. Or so they say.

The EXR uses a modified chassis of the Range Rover Sport and has been fitted with a 5.0-liter V8 engine that you can also find in a number of Range Rover models. The only caveat is that the EXR’s power train is FIA-restricted for racing purposes, which means that output is only limited to 300 horsepower and 428 lb/ft of torque. The EXR is also fitted with a six-speed manual transmission - and option of a Sadev 6-speed sequential transmission is also available - while also carrying Ricardo front, center, and rear differentials.

The EXR rally car will be in attendance at the Goodwood Festival of Speed at the end of June were it will be showcased for the first time in full rallying gear.


A lot of people know Ken Block from his rallying forays with the Monster World Rally Team. But for all of his accomplishments in rally racing, a certain segment of his fan base love him more because of another reason.

Gymkhana .

The fifth installment of the Gymkhana series will debut on July 9, 2012, and the good news is that the video is going back to its roots. The latest version - Gymkhana 4 - veered away from the raw, playground feel and steered towards a more Hollywood-centric approach.

For Gymkhana 5, Block is going old-school. “My idea for Gymkhana FIVE was simple,” Block said. “I wanted to build on the ultimate playground concept from Gymkhana THREE, and bring the franchise back to that raw and fast feel that the earlier videos had."

For Gymkhana 5, Block and his crew trooped to San Francisco to shoot the video.

"I’ve always wanted to film a Gymkhana video in a city and there are few places as unique and iconic with such amazing topography as San Francisco," he said.

Check out the teaser video of Gymkhana 5 and be one with the rest of us in waiting with baited breath for the video to arrive. July 9th can’t arrive soon enough.

Remember the days when car racing was “Car Racing.” The rules were loosely written and even looser followed, and it was considered more entertainment than sport. Those were the good old days, when the purpose was to build a car faster than the others and hire a driver that can keep the thing on the tarmac. Those days all went away in the 1980s, as all of the major professional racing circuits – NASCAR, Indy, F1 , NHRA – turned these entertainment spectacles into damn sporting events.

While we love our sports – I for one am obsessed with NFL football – the turning of driving a car fast into a sport led to the injection of fairness and parity. This led to restrictor plates, horsepower limits, and barred modifications. It even led to drivers starting to whine and boo-hoo about a little paint scraping… Well, if you are ready to see some racing in its truest form, take a look-see at the Global RallyCross Championship.

Sure, it piggybacks along with the aforementioned whiny racing “sports,” but it couldn’t be much farther from these sports in terms of real life competitive racing. The rules are few, the paint trading is a plenty, and there is no one crying foul when a fellow driver pulls a pit maneuver on your car’s tail end. He just pops it back in gear and thinks “why didn’t I see that guy there,” then gets ‘em back.

To boot, there are freaking bike-style ramps and barricades in the middle of the track to leap over or drive around. There are even shortcuts on each track. Granted the shortcuts are typically more difficult to drive through, but they are there. The only rules regarding the engine is the fitment of an intake restrictor and that the engine block must meet the manufacturer’s specification. This means you can bolt on as many ponies as you like, just don’t modify the block. Ah, you’ve got to love it.

Check out the above video to catch a glimpse of the awesomeness that is GRC!


As auto enthusiasts, we all often dream about racing cars professionally and how sweet it must be to navigate these powerful machines to within inches of the bounds of physics. Well, unfortunately, we tend to overlook the fact that with all of that risk comes the potential for severe injury and even death. Unfortunately, we experienced the risk involved in car racing this weekend as up-and-coming rally co-driver, Gareth Roberts, perished in a crash at the young age of 24.

Gareth was in his typical position in the Peugeot 207 Super 2000 that Craig Breen was piloting in the Targa Florio-Rally Internazionale Di Sicilia, rattling off the upcoming track directions and related speeds when Breen lost control of the Peugeot and put it into a guardrail. According to reports, Gareth was impaled by the guardrail and lost his life as a result of the injuries.

According to statements from teammates and crew members, Breen and Gareth had been really working well with one another and were starting to garner a lot of attention in the rally world. Gareth also had a bright future as a driver, once he learned the necessary skills, but that unfortunately, never came to fruition.

We are deeply saddened by the death of this young man and pass our condolences onto his family, friends, and his racing team. This is really a reminder of just how dangerous racing truly is, especially rally racing, and we hope that the rally world can learn from this tragedy and make strides toward this type of thing not happening again.

Any fan of professional wrestling is used to seeing per-produced challenges/invitations via video and in dramatic fashion, but racing fans rarely see such drama. Well, that was until Travis Pastrana decided his competition at the upcoming X-Games just wasn’t tough enough this year and sent a video challenge/invitation to 8-time WRC champ, and fellow Red Bull athlete, Sebastien Loeb.

This was far from the professional wrestling-esq “I challenge you to a cage match” style of challenge, as Travis’ video was short, sweet and complimentary to Loeb‘s skills as a rally driver. Red Bull put together Loeb’s response in a much more dramatic fashion, as it was dubbed over with some music and had a plethora of information regarding his super-fast car built just for this event. It even included an auto show-like red cloth veil removal. Still it wasn’t an over-the-top wrestling response, but it was still a tab on the dramatic side relative to Pastrana’s original video.

So let’s have a look at what Pastrana has gotten himself into… Loeb is running a car built-to-suit by Citroen Racing. It comes with a 2.0-liter four-pot that pumps out an unreal 545 ponies and 590 pound-feet of face-deforming torque. According to the video, the hot Citroen will hit 60 mph in just under 3 seconds.

Needless to say, Pastrana and his 2013 Dodge Dart are not only going up against the best rally driver that the world has to offer today, but also a car that is as good as any in the X-Games. Has Pastrana bitten off more than he can chew? Only time will tell, so we will have to wait until the RallyCross event kicks off on July 1st to find out.

We’ll keep you up to date with any other news that pops regarding this friendly rivalry.

You can see Pastrana’s challenge video above and Loeb’s acceptance video after the jump.

Chris Harris is at it again, only this time he has snagged up a rather shoddy looking and running Land Rover , borrowed a clunky trailer with egg shells for tires, bought a £4,000 ($6,225) E30 BMW 325i “Rally car” (that’s at least what the dude that sold it to him called it), and attempted to try and get the rally car to a local track to test it.

Getting to the rally track turned out to be a task in itself, as it began with the cooling fan on his shoddy old 3.9-liter V-8-powered Land Rover crapping out and him repairing it in a not-so-correct-way that ended up causing it to pop fuses like crazy. Add on top of that the fact that this now hot-wired fan was constantly killing the battery and you have quite a situation.

On top of the crappy tow car, there is the fact that he borrowed a trailer from a friend that has tires that are magnets for punctures and replacements are not available at any tire shop. After popping and shredding two of the four tires on this trailer, Harris and his crew manage to get the £4,000 Bimmer to the track and beat the living hell out of it. The Bimmer took it well until Chris pushed it a little too far and spun it out coming out of a turn. Fortunately, the car was fine and the rallying continued. You can see it all of this in the above video.

The rally racing is only half of the fun of the video, as the trip getting there had plenty of interesting twists. To boot, the trailer from hell gave Chris and the boys another surprise on the way back home… Ah, the joys of budget racing!

Posted on by Brad Anderson

If you watch Formula One as religiously as we do, then you’ll be aware that the commentators continually refer to F1 drivers as the best in the world, and while we respect their talent immensely, we do have a firm belief that rally drivers possibly possess even more skill. This is simply due to the fact that they often drive cars which can accelerate as fast as F1 cars on roads less than half the width of a common F1 track.

Additionally, rally cars have a lot more personality than F1 cars as classic rally cars were not as clinical as F1 cars of the time and right now, and if you love rally just as much as we do then the following video is a must.

In the latest episode of ‘Chris Harris on Cars’ on the Drive YouTube network, the man himself, Chris Harris, was lucky enough to be invited by Pirelli to the Italian launch of its new P7 Corsa Classic racing tire specifically designed for classic rally cars.

In a first, Harris rides shotgun in a selection of incredible rally cars, rather than drive them, but this has to go down as one of our very favorite Chris Harris reviews. Cars featured heavily in the video include the Lancia Stratos , Lancia Delta S4, and the incredible Lancia 037 which produces a noise so incredible that it will literally send shivers down your spine.

Add that to the fact that a host of extremely successful rally drivers were on hand to drive Harris around in the cars, including Markku Alen and Juha Kankkunen, and you have the makings of a truly incredible video.

We all have our own tolerance level for speed and danger, and rally racing is about the limit for most automotive buffs. We see these guys whipping around turns and sliding in loose gravel at speeds best reserved for smooth tarmac and we think “yea, not for me.” All we ever really get to see though is the outside of the car and rarely do we ever get a look at what really goes on inside the car during a live rally.

Subaru rally driver, David Higgins, and his co-driver, Craig Drew, decided it was time to let us in on what it is really like behind the wheel of a 300+ horsepower machine in loose dirt. First and foremost, Craig Drew sounds like he was once an auctioneer, as he quickly blurts out the upcoming turns, and its recommended speed. How exactly he manages to keep an eye on his track notes while flying around turns and bouncing up and down is beyond us.

Secondly, Subaru mounted a forward-pointing camera, so we can see the track live as Drew and Higgins tackle it. Even seeing the video of their running in the Rally America Susquehannock Trail Rally in Wellsboro, PA was enough to make us a little uneasy, so we could only imagine what kind of training both drivers went through to manage to slither down this track that is barely wide enough for a four-wheeler, let alone a rally car, at speeds obviously in excess of 100 mph.

Truly scary stuff. Take a look at the video and see if you could actually handle the craziness that these guys do.


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