If you are planning to buy a rally car, you must not rush into things without doing some research about the rally car market. Buying the first rally car can be quite confusing for most of us. The danger of losing money and valuable time is quite high, if you aren't thorough on the subject. Rally cars are a tiny niche in the much bigger automobile market. Most people enter into this business not knowing anything about how to get the best deal or which vehicle to choose in the process. We have put together some important tips that would come in handy when you decide to buy a rally car.
Purchasing or Renting the Rally Car -
Most people would prefer to rent a rally car for a short term before actually buying one themselves. There are rally car sales companies that run schemes known as "Arrive and Drive" for those people, who are looking to dip their toes in the water before owning a rally car. Buying a rally car can cost between £1,000 to £250,000 in the United Kingdom. Not only the investment, there is a great deal of time and effort also involved in the process of purchasing a rally car.
However, if you are sure about your intentions of owning a rally car, you should plan to buy a car that could be sold for a higher price at a later date. Part exchange or searching for a used rally car can save money that would have been spent as an up-front investment. This information will be very important for people who are planning on purchasing a rally car.
Rally Car Classes -
Rally cars have their own technical language and specifications which could be confusing to the new entrant to the rally car market. There is a large number of rally car classes that the newbie should familiarize himself with. It starts from the Road Rally or a slightly modified production car to Groups A, B, N and WRC (World Rally Car) and the high-end of rally car technology. Wikipedia can be searched in order to check for the important characteristics of each group.
What to Ask the Seller?
Perusing rally cars on sale will get you asking many questions about one engine over the other. And when you find a really good rally car that fits your purpose, you must ask some important questions to the seller. Some of the questions should cover the below mentioned topics.
1/ Is the car log-booked?
2/ The mileage of each component of the car. (Engine, differentials, gearbox and shocks)
3/ Was the vehicle home-built or factory-built?
4/ The recent competition history of the car.
5/ What parts and accessories are originally available with the car? (Do you need to fix a sump guard and bucket seat yourself?)
6/ Is the car road legal?
How to Get the Licence?
As soon as, you purchase the new rally car, you will want to put it on the road as soon as possible. But before you can get near a rally car track, you will need to get an appropriate licence for the car. You can start by joining the local motor club in your town and also purchase the starter pack from the Motor Sports Association. Get to know the existing members there and they will be of immense help. Speaking to them will help to integrate yourself into the rallying community too.
The Rally Car Jargon -
Works / Ex-Works - A term that is used for a rally car that was factory-built and put together using the best components available at that particular time. This will definitely give the rally car an edge over the other cars that were home-built.
Clubman - A word used to describe non-works cars. These cars have slightly cheaper components.
Log Book - All rally cars require a valid RACMSA logbook in order to enter into the UK MSA events.
Track Day - A day that allows non-members to drive their own cars around the circuit in a racing venue. A small fee is charged as a facilitating fee. Track day cars can be anything from Toyota Prius to Robin Reliant.
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Amy Rice writes for www.paddock42.com when not writing I enjoy spending time with my daughter, visiting the cinema, gardening and walking.