Drawn Car’s History #2 –Audi’s Secret Rally Weapons
In 1984, the Audi Sport rally team unofficially launched the quattro mid-engine projects. Knowing that their present car, the 'normal' Audi Quattro wouldn't be able to stand against the upcoming modern four wheel-drive rivals like the Peugeot 205 T16 and the Lancia Delta S4, they had to build something new; and that 'new' was supposed to be the Audi sport Quattro RS001 and Audi sport Quattro RS002.
The Audi Sport quattro 'RS 001' was spotted by the photographer Jiří Jermakov on the road at Gratwein in Austria in 1985 during the preparation to be tested by Walter Röhrl– driver for Audi Sport rally team from 1984 to 1987. The photographer heard that Audi was testing on the area, went for a look and took 4 pictures. The 'RS 001' had a turbocharged 2.1 litre inline 5-cylinder engine, mounted longitudinally in the middle. Walter Röhrl said that "it was as good as the Quattro Sport E2 straight away."
In 1985, the FISA (former ruling committee of the FIA) announced a replacement class to the Group B, referred to as 'Group S.' It was mainly a 'prototype' class for rallying. The category made its debut in 1987. The 1987 Audi Sport quattro 'RS 002' Group S prototype featured more aerodynamic design and the turbocharged 2.1 litre inline-5 aluminium block engine with air intercooler and multipoint electronic fuel injection was able to generate 700 horsepower. The car weighed only 1,000 kg (2,200 lb) and could reach the top speed of 300 kph (186 mph). Audi officially tells that only two prototypes were built. The 'RS 002' had only one test drive in 1986. Unfortunately, the Group S class, like Group B, was ultimately cancelled. In 2016, after 29 years in museum, the Audi Sport quattro 'RS 002' appeared in Eifel Rallye Festival 2016, and was driven by Walter Röhrl. The car also appeared in Goodwood Festival of Speed in 2017.