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Road rallies

Road rallies

  Road rallies are long distance race on open roads usually at unsafe and illegal speed in expensive and exotic cars. The latest most famous one is the Gumball Rally.

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.


About 10 years ago, Hyundai Accent owners ever walked with their chests puffed out a little bit, as their daily driver econo-hatch was actually being raced in the World Rally Championship. Despite the impressiveness that Hyundai Hyundai actually got this car into the WRC, it was a widely unsuccessful attempt because it never got a podium appearance and Hyundai cut funding in 2003.

It looks like Hyundai is ready to jump back into the WRC circuit, only this time with a more highly modified vehicle. It will also not be an Accent, but rather a heavily modified i20. However, don’t expect this Hyundai rally ride to look as much as the i20 in your garage as the Accent rally car did, as this model will sit on a chassis that is significantly wider and lower than the factory model.

In addition to the modified chassis, this i20 will ditch the 1.2- and 1.4-liter gasoline engines that it comes standard with and instead have the turbocharged 1.6-liter from the Veloster . There is no way that Hyundai would enter the WRC with a stock 201-horsepower 1.6-liter engine, so we assume that Hyundai will pump this engine to over 300 ponies to keep it competitive.

We definitely expect a much better performance by Hyundai this time around because the company has really come into its own when it comes to technology. Hyundai has also become one of those brands that folks can rally around, as it has really come from often being the butt of automotive jokes to a well-respected company that actually gives the big boys – Honda, Toyota Toyota and Nissan Nissan – a run for their money. So, don’t be surprised if to see the fancily written “H” on the podium at some point in the 2013 WRC series WRC.

Source: SpecialStage

The Gumball 3000 is back for its 13th rendition in 2012 and it guarantees to be just as wild and crazy as it has always been. The 2012 Gumball 3000, for those that do not know, is a roughly 3,000-mile rally that begins in New York, heads into Canada, and eventually ends up in Los Angeles, all while hitting five check points between New York and L.A.

At each checkpoint, the entire group gets together and throws one massive party with the key party coming at the very end in L.A. Though the Gumball 3000 is touted as a race, it is more of a leisurely drive that features a wide array of celebrities and all types of awesome cars, from the downright powerful and sexy to the economical and environmentally friendly.

This year’s Gumball 3000 is set to kickoff on Friday at noon and is in no way lacking celebrity appearances and tons of flashy rides.

Click past the jump to read more about the Gumball 3000, as well as the cars and celebrities making appearances.

One Lap America actually has roots dating back to the original Cannonball Sea-to-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash, known simply as Cannonball. Many of today’s enthusiasts think that Cannonball was simply a movie or plot, but this was actually a real-life cross-country race that included high speeds on U.S. highways.

The original Cannonball only lasted five runs until its organizer, Brock Yates, decided he had better quit this no-holds-barred race before the authorities decide to close it down. In 1984, the Cannonball returned, but was not about making it across the country as fast as possible, but about making it through a course that went throughout the lower 48 states and ended up with the amount of miles closest to Brock’s estimate.

In the modern era of the One Lap America, the race is now about following the rules of the road, as you drive throughout a predetermined course, and between these leisurely drives, you have track events. The scoring of this event is solely based on the track event results, but you and your co-driver(s) must also survive driving 24 hours on end, stopping only to enjoy a “gourmet” gas station hot dog or two along the way.

This 19-event, eight-day racing series just wrapped up on Saturday and we have your full list of winners in each class and we have also broken down a list of all of the oddest and most awesome cars to grace the 2012 running.

Click past the jump to read about the odd and awesome cars, as well as the winners from each class.

It’s rather obvious that we love cars, duh… But do you know what we love more than normal old everyday cars? We love custom monsters that make us go “what the?” What we love even more than that are factory-produced models that give us those same feelings, like the Morgan 3 Wheeler company.

Morgan manufactures three different 3-wheel cars – Standard, Bespoke, and Superdry Edition – and each one is cooler than the one before it. The standard Morgan 3 Wheeler is pretty slick on its own, featuring a 1,990 cc V-twin engine that propels this three-wheeled contraption to 60 mph in about 4.5 seconds and to a top speed of 115 mph.

It’s sweet enough to just talk about these beasts, but it’s even more fun to watch them in action. We don’t mean a leisurely Sunday cruise with grandma and the kids. Nope, we mean screaming this bad boy through Goodwood hill, breaking the ice land speed record, and doing a massive burnout. Okay, the first video is, in fact, a more leisurely Sunday drive, but it has some awesome V-twin audio and some really nice shots of the car to compensate for the lacking adrenaline.

Regardless of the video type, any car/motorcycle buff will not only love these videos, but will likely need a tissue to wipe the drool from his or her computer screen. What’s best about these awesome machines is that they are actually fairly affordable, as the Standard model bases out at just £25,000 ($40,345) plus VAT.

So crank up those computer speakers and enjoy the sights and sounds.

Click past the jump for three additional videos.

The MK1 Escort was never a real rally champ, given it was an overweight econo-box driven by a tiny little four-banger. However, the MK1 Escort was a bit of a cult classic, as it was kind of like Herby the Love Bug, you never expected it to win, but it dang sure was a cute lil’ thing.

As the rally circuit became more competitive, the MK1 disappeared and hasn’t been seen since. Until now, sort of…

From here we need you to carefully follow a few steps, yeah we know, steps. First, check out the above video of the revived MK1 slinging around a rally course, but make sure to stop short of 2:45 mark, and then come back to this point. Easy enough, right?

As you watched the revived MK1 Ford fly around, did you notice anything odd? Maybe you noticed the fact that the car seemed drastically too small for the scenery? If not, we’ll let the cat out of the bag now, that’s a 1:5 scale radio-controlled model of the original MK1 Escort rally machine whipping around a 1:5 scale rally track. Oh, and the audio; that’s the guys at Headquake RC dubbing the actual sounds from the original MK1 over top of the RC car’s sounds.

Don’t believe us? Scroll to the 2:45 mark of the video and hit “Play.” Now you can hear the sounds of the RC car working hard around the track, which is impressive in its own right. We don’t know which part we are more impressed by, the realistic looks of the 1:5 replica or the filming and dubbing quality to make the illusion that you are actually watching modern footage of the MK1. Nice show, Headquake, nice show indeed.

You can have your Indy cars, NASCAR, and drag racing, but none of those get our hearts thumping and the hair on our necks standing more than a good old rally race. Nothing like seeing a car pushed to extreme levels on loose dirt, muddy water, and tarmac.

A few weeks ago, we teased everyone with an article about Dodge entering the love-it-or-hate-it 2013 Dart into the Global RallyCross Circuit . This definitely opened up a small area in our hearts, somewhere near the left ventricle, for this Alfa Romeo in Dodge garb.

Dodge just increased our slowly growing love for the new Dart by releasing a video of Travis Pastrana, the hired lunatic that will swing the Dart through the dirt at break-neck speeds, testing out his new rally machine. We must say, if this video doesn’t raise the hair on your neck and make you lean into the computer screen, you might want to check your pulse.

This is one of the few times that a maker has included music on a “sneak peak” type of video, but turned off the music when the car is moving, so you can actually hear this bad machine working hard. This video is simply awesome and the Dart seems to perform well with no one else on the track with it.

Take a look at the above video and see for yourself how the Dart handles a closed rally-style course. Yeah, some of it is a little dramatized, but overall Dodge did a good job with it and the inside shots are awesome, as you can see the driver feathering the throttle to perfection. Oh, and keep a close eye on the rear of the car at the 2:05 mark, as a large piece of the rear bumper gets torn off.

“Epic fail” is ultimately one of the most overused and incorrectly used phrases in the world. But, we are going to go ahead and chalk this one up as just that, an epic fail.

If you have ever watched drag races , you have likely noticed one thing in common with all of them. They are always on a straight and flat track. This is not without good reason, as drag cars, rail cars especially, are designed to simply go in a straight line really fast. If you’ve ever seen a rail car veer off the track you might notice that they rarely ever recover prior to a spectacular crash. This is because they have the turning capabilities of a fully loaded semi truck on an icy downhill slope.

Now that we’ve let you in on that secret of the dragster, what do you think would happen when a 1,000+ horsepower rail car decides to take a Sunday drive down a back country road? If you still don’t know, we’ll fill you in. It would crash at the first tiny kink in the road, much like the above video.

In what looks to be some sort of dragster road racing event, these guys take a rail car about 50 feet up the road before sitting it down in a small ravine, in a less-than-desirable way. It’s absolutely hilarious to watch the driver attempt to correct the car and you can really see the minimal amount of steering these things actually have. Fortunately, the driver wasn’t hurt, but we are pretty certain the car has a couple of bucks worth of damage… Enjoy!

Source: DPC Cars

The Gumball 3000 is a modern day version of the infamous 1970s road trip movie. It takes drivers across 3000 miles through 13 countries in just seven days with insane parties each night. And while the real thing won’t actually take place until Friday, May 25th, 2012, a new trailer of the Gumball 3000 has been released and follows the story of MTV’s Dirty Sanchez stars, Lee Dainton and Matthew Pritchar,d participating in the famous 3000 mile road trip.

"Gumball is about challenging tradition and taking a non conventional approach to exploring and developing cultural and creative boundaries," said Maximillion Cooper, Founder & CEO, Gumball 3000 Group.

This year’s show will feature stars like: Bun B, EVE, Ndamukong Suh, The Dudesons, Tamer Hassan, Costas Mandylor, Shane Lynch, Maximillion Cooper, David Hasselhoff, David Guetta, and more. Next to all of these stars, and some really cool cars, the event will also include lots of music, film, and entertainment.

Don’t want to wait for next year’s event? Hit the jump to check out the best engine sounds of the 2011 Gumball 3000!


When Renault said that it was going to take a stab at running Pikes Peak in 2011 AND use a Dacia Duster to run the competition, a lot of people, shall we say, scoffed at that idea.

As it turns out, Renault was actually serious about the whole thing because the first photos of the Dacia Duster Pikes Peak have gone live. It seems a little ambitious for Renault to try to compete in one of the most famous - or infamous - hill climbing competitions in the world, especially considering when they’re using their low-cost, Romanian-based brand for the whole competition.

But this isn’t your ordinary Dacia Duster. While details are still limited, there are whispers going around that this particular Duster will carry a Nissan GT-R -sourced V8 engine that produces a staggering 850 horsepower. Last we checked, that’s a load of power, especially for a car that’s been stripped down to weigh just a little less than 900 kg (1,984 lbs).

The car is set to compete on June 26, 2011 at Pikes Peak, Colorado and will be piloted by Jean-Philippe Dayraut. We don’t know how competitive it’s going to be against the Imprezas of the competition, but there’s plenty of power under this Duster’s hood. And if you’ve got that covered, you stand a very good chance of being competitive.


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