Feb 21st, 2008 by RJ Menezes
Imagine flying down a narrow, tree-lined, dirt road at over 100mph in a stiff little hatchback with mondo power. You have no idea where you’re going, which is why there is a co-pilot sitting next to you reading off the upcoming corners as you approach them at insane speeds. “Sharp Left Now!”… “Right Over Bridge!”…. “Small Jump!”….”Big Jump!”…”Fast Chicane!”… and it goes on and on. This is Rally racing. To say it is intense is a little bit of a understatement.
For one to experience this first hand takes a lot of time and effort, oh and millions of dollars. A rally car is a bespoke vehicle. It is designed to take the abuse of a rally, as well as made to comply to the rule books of the sports sanctioning body. This is a world of $30,000 transmissions and magnesium wheels. A everyday enthusiast could never get their hands on one of these beasts, until now.
Volkswagens Czech brand, Skoda, has a rich rally tradition. The company has been participating in motor sports for more than 100 years. Well turned to it’s roots with this one. Based on the second generation Fabia hatchback, the Fabia S2000 is a whole other animal.
Unlike the street version, the Fabia S2000 is powered by a normally aspirated 280 horsepower four cylinder engine. All that power is sent through a six-speed sequential gearbox to a four-wheel-drive system with three mechanical differential locks. The whole car complies with FIA’s latest “Super 2000″ rally regulations.
The Fabia S2000 will be sold in full racing trim including bucket seats by Sparco, a roll cage and a totally modified exterior. The S2000 is set up for both amateur racers and professionals. Then of course, there is the estimated price tag. The good news is it is roughly a quarter of the price of a racing rally car. The bad news is a racing rally car goes for around a million dollars nowadays. Ouch, $250,000 is still a butt-load of money but this is a rally car. One you can actually own without needing a factory sponsorship. I can already smell the pine….
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