Do you remember the 1980s? Specifically 1986? It was the year some of the best movies were released, and the year rallying reached its zenith. Here are 7 cool Group B rally t-shirts (well, mostly Group B).
More freedom and less ‘red tape’ was the catch cry of rally fans and car makers in the late 1970s. And this led to a rewriting of the rule book for production cars and car maker’s freedom to tweak them (read: make them bonkers)… three groups were initially created: A, B, and C… N was added at the last minute and allowed for the running of stock production cars. It was boring.
It was Group B that grabbed us all by the short and curlies. For Group B, there was no restriction on car design, the materials used for the body, drivetrain layout, engine type or output, or construction materials for the chassis. Yep, it was a virtual free for all. And all the car maker had to do was homologate 200 road-going versions of their rally car to be eligible and it’s claimed that quite a few makers accidentally double counted the number of cars.
Kicking off in 1980, Group B was okay in the beginning but it got way better as each year rolled on until it peaked in 1986. By 1986, the mental, fire-spitting, high-flying ‘Killer Bs’ (Google that) were supercars in the truest sense of the word and could accelerate to 100km/h on dirt as fast as a Formula One car of the day could on a track.
In my opinion, Group B rally was the pinnacle of the sport. Yes, it was stupidly dangerous for the drivers and many of them died… a couple on live TV but Group B made brands like Audi and drivers like Stig Blomquist and Walter Rohrl. Indeed, I had the pleasure to interview Stig Blomquist once and he reckoned he’d have liked “more power” out of the Group B machines. Mental.
As I write this, the world is going mad for e-racing which seems bonkers. We will never again see the likes of Group B or the drivers who wrangled these nutcase cars. That’s why I scoured the internet for a selection of t-shirts about Group B. Wear these with pride. Before you do that, though, check out the video below that Red Bull put together as homage to Group B.
Don’t fancy a particular Group B rally car? Then this t-shirt is for you, celebrates the big hitters of the 1980s in retro style. Check it out HERE.
The Peugeot 205 GTI T16. This thing dominated Group B in 1985 and 1986, winning 16 of the 29 races. It was longer than a regular 205 GTI, was all-wheel drive, mid-engined and utterly mental. Check it out HERE.
Okay, the Escort Mk2 wasn’t a Group B superstar, it had its heyday in the late 1970s but it oozes cool and a lot of its oily bits made their way into the Mk3 Escort that raced in Group, so… Check it out HERE.
Another shirt showing off the legends of Group B. Bit different to the other one… with the gold maybe this one’s best left for Good. LOL. Check it out HERE.
The Lancia Delta S4 was another legendary Group B monster combining mid-engine layout with all-wheel drive; it weighed just 892kg and made 242kW. To say it was a weapon would be an understatement. Check it out HERE.
Like the Escort Mk2, the Lancia Stratos HF wasn’t a Group B rally car, it saw action in the 1970s. But it makes the list because it is, without doubt, one of the sexiest rally cars ever. And it was successful too, winning the WRC in 1974, ‘75 and ‘76. Check it out HERE.
We’ve already talked about the Audi quattro but I reckon this shirt not only sums up the Group B legend but also Group B itself. This one’s my favourite. Check it out HERE.
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