The first ever WRC-spec Subaru Impreza, built by Prodrive in 1997, has been consigned to H&H’s next auction at the Imperial War Museum on 14 October.
Do rally cars get any more iconic that a bright blue Subaru Impreza with the names McRae and Grist on the side? Perhaps, but few would disagree with the importance of such a machine. An estimate of £175,000-200,000 has been put on this piece of modern rallying history.
The story of the car’s history is an interesting one. Built to take advantage of the new less strict rally regulations, this Impreza along with its sister car went on to win the WRC outright.
After the 1997 WRC season, Prodrive sold the car to an Italian rally team who competed it in the Italian Rally Championship. Chassis 001 then went on to Ireland, where it was used and abused in many clubman rallies, before being left to gather dust. It was then rescued by a collector, who approached Prodrive to carry out a full restoration.
There were huge problems with rust, and the car had been bashed about and filled many times. Prodrive undertook the restoration, and it was completed to a word class standard, ready for many more years of rallying.