We've all been there. You just got your shiny new car home. Maybe it's just a Craigslist score, maybe you saved up your whole life for it. Either way, you look at it as you walk away and you promise, for REAL this time, that you are going to take care of it and not treat it like a rally car. Not the case for these first two. While they are not rally cars, they are ridiculous and deserve a place on the list of lunacy.
10: The Audi R8 Christmas Tree delivery
Honestly, it's not even the snow drifting that makes me cringe on this one, it's the thought of trying to get all the sap off. If you haven't delivered Christmas trees from Thanksgiving to Christmas Eve before, I don't want to hear it. YOU WEREN'T THERE, MAN. Thank the baby Jesus that thing is vinyl wrapped. You can watch the video here.
9: Ferrari Enzo "Rally Car"
Ok so technically these first two are just people with a good sense of humor. This one I never understood. Uploaded without a description to YouTube, it seems to just be someone with access to an Enzo who is clearly overdraft on their F's to give account? Whatever the reason, it makes for a cool picture if not a mildly entertaining couple minutes of hooning. Purists need not watch the video here.
8: Doug Jenkins' C3 Corvette Rally Car
There are more photos and videos online of Corvettes being ruined as "rally cars" than I care to keep track of but Doug's car was special. Doug was rallying this car in the early 2000's when I started rallying and I distinctly remember the rumble of that ridiculous thing as he came sliding through the woods. The best, however, was when he broke his windshield in a crash at Maine Forest 04 and bought a whole sheet of Lexan from Home Depot and crudely taped it over the opening to finish the rally. The true spirit of rally.
7: BMW M1 Rally Car
Just before Group B, there was a glorious time of ridiculous cars competing in the World Rally Championship. Of these, the BMW M1 might be the most hilarious. Once dubbed "the most powerful rally car in the world", the 430hp M1 wasn't exactly built for rallying with it's wide, long dimensions, but it sure made for some awesome photos.
6: Ferrari 308 GTB Rally Car
Ferrari has never been known to stay away from racing and in the early 1980's rally was just too cool. Ferrari had to drop in to say hello. Having worked closely with Lancia for years including providing the powerplant for the infamous Stratos rally car of the 70s, Ferrari was no stranger to rally. Ultimately, however, the changing landscape of the early Group B era proved not to be fruitful for Ferrari. They did, however, leave us this excellent photo of a 308 ruining itself mid-corner on what looks like Acropolis-sized rock.
5: Bentley Continental GT Speed ruined in the Welsh forest
Kris Meeke has long since been a favorite driver of mine. He's charming, handsome, and once took James May through a Welsh WRC stage in a 100% stock (except some racing seats) Bentley Continental GT Speed. The Top Gear clip is well worth watching here.
4: Ian Duncan's East African Classic Safari winning 67 Mustang
The East African Classic Safari Rally is a great place to go drool if you love watching unique, beautiful, classic cars get the piss hammered out of them by some of the world's best, and often retired, talent. In 2009 Ian Duncan came back from electrical failure to beat out Bjorn Waldegaard's Datsun for the overall win in his big, fat, heavy, badass as hell Mustang.
3: Everything Tuthill Porsche touches
Tuthill Porsche is a shop that specializes, extremely successfully I might add, at preparing 911's for rally. That is correct. There is a shop in the UK that makes a healthy living building world-class Porsches. For rally. And though I chose the tarmac spec photo above, mainly because I think the only photos of cars that should ever be posted are airborne, a gravel-spec 997 is an option. Chris Harris reviewed that gravel spec'd beast but the BBC has since gotten even grouchier and blocked it in the states on grounds of copyright.
Brakim Racing, the brainchild of former internet marketing whizkid Matt Brandenburg, is known for a lot of things. Subtlety in color choices and driving style is not one of those things. Matt decided, some time ago, that a proper Lambo rally car was something that the world was missing. As such, he found a deal on a used Gallardo, stripped it to nothing, and began re-engineering it to tolerate the abuse of stage rally. While it has been a slow, arduous process, and we have yet to see it hit the stages, the energy devoted into the project for nothing other than S and giggles is to be applauded in some strange way. Matt, get your ships together and put this thing on stage.
1: Porsche 959 Paris Dakar Rally Car
It is said that where there is racing, there is Porsche. And not happy to sit on the sidelines and watch, Porsche developed what may go down as one of the most incredibly ridiculous and amazing vehicles ever built. When Porsche decided to join the World Rally Championship, they designed from scratch what many call the coolest and rarest 911 of all time, the 959. But shortly after designing it, Group B was decided to be too costly for the return. Instead, they campaigned them in the Paris Dakar rally finishing 1-2 in 1986.
What did we forget? Send us the wildest rally cars you can think of!