A few months ago, Škoda revealed its all-new Fabia, a model that will undoubtedly be a vital product for the Czech automaker, yet it hardly registered on our scale of the most exciting debuts at the Paris Motor Show this year. But this... this is more like it.
Going to most races means watching the action from behind a fence or from high up on grandstands, but rallying often gives spectators the chance to get closer to the competition than practically any other forms of motorsport. If people are willing to put themselves in danger, they're able to sit right at a corner exit and watch the cars hurtling toward them. However, the Jolly Rally al Colle San Carlo in Italy got a lot less jolly recently, when an out of control vehicle nearly struck a group of
Rallying may enjoy a very strong association with all-wheel drive, but it wasn't so long ago that the World Rally Championship was populated by cars that slipped and slid across gravel and tarmac using rear-wheel drive. One of those was the Toyota Celica. While the little Celica eventually joined the gravel-spewing masses with an all-wheel-drive rally car, Toyota is returning to its rear-drive rally roots with a modified version of the critically acclaimed GT86.
Rallying isn't just dangerous for drivers, it's far and away one of the most dangerous forms of motorsport for spectators. Because of a lack of runoff areas and barriers, an out-of-control rally car is a huge danger for the fans that line the track. That's a lesson these extremely lucky Polish rally enthusiasts had to learn firsthand.
There are crashes and then there are crashes. This is emphatically the latter, as a competitor in a Belgian event partially demolishes a brick building with the help of his Opel Ascona rally car. Next time, we'd recommend a backhoe, bulldozer or perhaps some dynamite.
As far as rally crashes go, this one is pretty terrifying. At this month's Hellendoorn Rally, Harry Kleinjan failed to negotiate a turn and drove his Porsche 911 RSR straight into a Jersey barrier, flipping the car into the river.
The Formula Cross YFC 450, a rally kart based on the Yamaha YFZ 450 ATV from 2002-2013, has been priced at $7,500, but that's for the build-it-yourself kit and doesn't include taxes or shipping. If you want Formula Cross to put it together for you, something you might want to consider since the kit includes 40 items plus hardware, that will be an extra $1,350 after you've delivered it to their facility.
Although the vehicle sliding through the image above looks something like a cartoonified World Rally Championship Ford Focus, it is actually an ATV – the Yamaha YZF 450 Raptor, at right – turned into a miniature rally car. The transformation comes courtesy of Formula Cross, a company that wants to create an entry series into motorsports or weekend-warrioring that's more open, and kinder on the body, than karting. From what we can tell, the brains behind the machine is none other than
Rally driving is so reliably mesmerizing that we never lack for viewers when we post rallying footage, especially when raw engine noises accompany the raw talent. Yet we rarely come across videos that take a deeper look at who races, the private lives of privateers and the urge to 'run what you brung' through quiet forests with few spectators and less money. Motorsports filmmaker Matt Johnston wants to change that.
The Legend Boucles de Spa is a historic rally held in the Ardennes Forest around Spa, Belgium, and it commemorates the actual Boucle de Spa rally races held for 37 years from 1953 to 1990. The drill is simple: lots of drivers plotting vintage machinery at various levels of anger through the trees.
Rally racing is amazing to watch, and it's no doubt a blast from behind the wheel. But while we'd love some time behind the wheel of a genuine rally car, we're guessing that the sport is a lot harder than it looks. Then again, dirt racing looks really easy when Ken Block is behind the wheel.
If you need a little assistance getting through your annual 80-course meal and various NFL games, may we offer you some GT3 RS à la Rally? Some kind chef has cobbled together 22 minutes of footage of the Porsche that loves to get dirty doing slides and Scandinavian Flicks and making rooster tails.
The real revolutionaries in the Fiesta Movement – the cars themselves, not the agents – have more work to do even though they're kind of on sale now and the revolution is over. Ford is giving 43 of the 100 Fiestas from the movement to the Team O'Neil Reilly Rally School in New Hampshire, where the hatchbacks will be refitted for student racing duty.
VW Race Touareg 2 – Click above for high-res image gallery
Carlos Sainz wins the 2010 Dakar Rally for VW – Click above for high-res image gallery