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Hemmings Motor News Blog Blog

Hemmings Motor News Blog

Hemmings Motor News has been around since 1954. We're proud of our heritage, but we're also more than the Hemmings full of classifieds that your father subscribed to. Aside from new editorial content every month in Hemmings, we have three monthly magazines: Hemmings Muscle Machines, Hemmings Classic Car and Hemmings Sports and Exotic Car.

While our editors traverse the country to find the best content for those magazines, we find other oddities related to the old-car hobby that we really had no place for - until now. With this blog, we're giving you a behind-the-scenes look at what we see and what we do during the course of putting out some of the finest automotive magazines you'll ever read.

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Rotary Rocket – Mazda RX-7 Evolution Group B Works

Posted August 29, 2017 9:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: mazda rally rotary rx-7

The World Rally Championship’s Group B era lasted just four seasons, but the intense competition and inherent danger made it more popular than Formula 1 among fans. Manufacturers such as Audi, Lancia, Peugeot, and Ford spared no expense in developing competitive cars, but that’s not to say that every team had an unlimited budget. In 1984 and 1985, the Mazda Rally Team Europe (MRTE) campaigned an RX-7 built with limited help from Japan, yet managed to score a podium finish in its fourth outing. Though 20 cars were planned to meet homologation rules, just seven were built, and on September 6, possibly the last remaining unraced Mazda RX-7 Evolution heads to auction in London.

All-wheel drive (AWD) cars like the Audi Quattro proved dominant on gravel and snow, but mid-engine, rear-drive cars like Lancia’s 037 performed well enough to win the championship in 1983 and challenge for it in 1984. Perhaps encouraged by Lancia’s 1983 success, MRTE, led by team manager (and driver) Achim Warmbold, began development of the front-engine, rear-drive RX-7 Evolution at the team’s headquarters in Belgium during 1983. The end result was a suitable, if not quite ideal, platform for Group B’s 1984 and 1985 seasons.

Read the full article here.

1985 Mazda RX-7 Evolution. Photos by Rowan Horncastle, courtesy RM Sotheby’s.

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