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Old 12-12-2003, 12:50 AM   #1
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 2953
Join Date: Nov 2000
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Rochester, MI, USA
2000 Impreza 2.5RS
2005 Impreza WRX STi

Default Would this work as a rally car?

I really would like to start competing in club rally. I have been looking for a car that I could run, and I found one that is really cheap. It is a Plymouth Horizon, and the guy doesn't want hardly anything for it. My question is, is there anywhere where I can get upgrading shocks, a cage, etc. for it? Has anyone ever heard of a Horizon competing? I am not concerned about being competitive, because I am sure I am lacking in the skill department, so I wouldn't be competitive anyways. I figure this way, I could learn on a slow car, that is so cheap I won't care once I crash it. So what do you guys think?

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Old 12-12-2003, 01:27 AM   #2
Scooby Guru
Member#: 16840
Join Date: Mar 2002
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Green Bay, WI
98 M3, '14 outback
03 ktm 640a


Your best bet to starting cheap is buying a pre-made car. There's a bunch availiable, starting at www.rallyclassified.com is a good place to start. Also www.specialstage.com is a good site for North American rallying.

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Old 12-12-2003, 02:53 AM   #3
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Member#: 733
Join Date: Jan 2000
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Squadra Delle Pecore Nere
'13 Focus ST


Mopar used to have manuals on how to prep your car for rally racing.

I agree w/Jay, go w/a used rally car. Low power FWD is best for car control and learning how be smooth.

I'm gonna be starting from the right seat then hopefully migrating over to the left seat in the future.

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Old 12-12-2003, 07:35 AM   #4
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 50239
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Sydney Australia
2004 Forester XT
Galant VR-4 genuine RS


Low power FWD is best for car control and learning how be smooth.
Smooth yes, because with low power you have to learn how to keep up your speed and car abuse dont cut it.

But control? Nah, rear drive im my experience. Plus, it's more enjoyable. There's nothing like scattering spectactors with a well timed power slide, throwing rocks at em all

I would third the suggestion to buy something already prepared. Just do not build until you get a seaon or two behind you and you have the budget, mechanical skill and knowledge to build. It's a very complex process and not for the faith hearted or the broke.
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Old 12-12-2003, 08:13 AM   #5
RB5 Clone
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 30909
Join Date: Dec 2002
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: lastditchracing.net & 03 STI
RA East Open Class
Champs 07-08-09

Wink First rally car? buy, don't build

check out specialstage.com or rallyclassifieds.com

you will find caged, battle-tested rally cars for $5000 or so, often with piles of spares.

forget that Horizon, it has lousy aftermarket support for rally parts (and even when built, would still be a piece of crapola). You'd need to spend at least $3k to get a decent cage built. Add in the other parts you'd need, and you see how much cheaper it is to buy ready-built.

a good starter car needs to be simple and tough, with beefed up suspension, race seats, current-dated harnesses, a tripmeter, good skidplates and a freakin BOMBPROOF cage. Lots of spare wheels and gravel tires, snow tires, yada yada.

AWD is nice, but increases running costs (more tire wear, more moving parts to break, etc). FWD is generally cheaper and emphasizes driving skill and judgement instead of traction. Still, traction is really nice!

couple recent examples from various sites;

Subaru Legacy (oregon) $5000
Mazda 323GTX (NY) $4000
Ford Escort (NY) $5000
VW Golfs all over the place, $3000-7000
Subaru Impreza 1.8 or 2.2, $6000-8000
Scooby 2.5 RS non-turbo, $8000-15000

Get a good car and use your remaining funds to just go and run all the rallyXes and club rallies you can.

If there's any way you can swing it, budget a couple thou for driver training at a rally school like Team O'Neil or EuroRally. You'll have more fun, go faster sooner, be safer to yourself and your codriver and spectators...and be much less likely to immediately crash your new car!

Ciao for now,

Dave G
LDR Co-Pilote and Wheel Twiddler

"...embrace loose gravel, beware big trees..."
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Old 12-12-2003, 09:42 AM   #6
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 462
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Westport, CT
2000 Impreza 2.5 RS
SCCA Rally Cross Car


another vote for the "buy pre-built" method. building a car is expensive and you'll waste time mucking around doing stuff wrong. it's only a good idea to build when you have big bucks and a lot of experience, so you get the car the way you want it.

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Old 12-12-2003, 11:08 AM   #7
Subie Gal
Super Moderator
Member#: 301
Join Date: Sep 1999
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: WA
1970 FF-1 & '70 Van
02 WRX/01 RS


i've built 2 cars now...

wanna see my ccard statements?

buy one already prepared
upgrade to the current scca rules/specs
and have a hell of a time

i started in fwd....
as stated...
learn to drive a slow car "fast"
learn to carry speed....
and the jump to a faster car will not be so difficult.

there are a lot of options out there.
lots of cars available.
do your research and plan accordingly...

make sure that you understand that once you are in
this game... you're gonna be broke for life!!

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Old 12-12-2003, 04:22 PM   #8
Scooby Guru
Member#: 733
Join Date: Jan 2000
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Squadra Delle Pecore Nere
'13 Focus ST

Rally Stuff

Originally posted by Subie Gal
i've built 2 cars now...

wanna see my ccard statements?
No not really.

make sure that you understand that once you are in
this game... you're gonna be broke for life!!

I think I'm gonna try and head down this path as well... but I'm starting as a navvie to let my driver maintain the car.

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