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1997 Subaru Impreza WRX STi Type R

Iconic Auctioneers Ltd

1997 Subaru Impreza WRX STi Type R
Iconic Auctioneers Ltd
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SH ID

23-0724017

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FEATURED BY SPEEDHOLICS

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In Stock

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United Kingdom

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Description

Engine Number 917784

 

Transmission Manual

 

Body Colour Sonic Blue

 

DRIVE RHD

One of only 20 homologation cars built by Prodrive for the 1997 WRC (12 Group A, four Group N and four Recce). Used as a 'recce' car by Indonesian Rally champion, Tonny Hardianto, in his World Championship campaign, and returned to the UK in 1998. The MY Impreza WRX STI Type R was introduced to the Japanese Domestic Market in January 1997 and remained available until August of that year. Utilising the two-door bodyshell it had several features aimed directly at homologation for rallying. This is the vehicle that Prodrive used for its Group N customer cars and was also the donor vehicle for the Group A WRC in 1997, 1998, 1999 and 2000. The two-door body is slightly stronger/stiffer than the four-door RA and a solid rear bulkhead increased torsional stiffness even further. Apart from the bodyshell, differences between the Type R and the JDM four-door STi models included a short-ratio gearbox, an adjustable Electromechanical Center Differential (DCCD), the absence of ABS, Intercooler water spray, two opposed pistons on the rear brake calipers (instead of four) and some cosmetic differences like rear tinted glass, a radio/aerial delete, Oxford Blue dash clocks and the 555 SWRT seats. The Type R was also the first Impreza STi to have a high-rise rear spoiler and colour-matched side skirts, the standard STI models only benefitted from the larger spoiler and coded side-skirts the following year. This Type R, GC8056980, was one of the 20 cars provided by Subaru in early 1997 for their rally team, Prodrive, to use for their 1997 and 1998 World Rally Championship campaign. Prodrive worked their magic on this select group of Subarus and converted them to WRC-spec cars for team and customer entries plus a small number of Recce cars. We understand that 12 were prepared to Group A regulations, four for Group N and four as Recce cars. P800 WRC was built for recces and was purchased, alongside his WRC car, by Indonesian Rally champion, Tonny Hardianto, as part of his World Championship campaign. It was built with bash guards to protect the engine, final drive and fuel tanks, fitted with a full Kevlar underfloor and the standard ‘red top’ engine was thought to be sufficient at 275bhp. We understand that it was used on just two events, the 1997 WRC event in Indonesia and the Indonesian National Rally. The cars were on a ‘Carnet’ and returned to the UK in late 1997 to be sold. The renowned Bill Gwynne snapped up this leading technology pair, selling this car to the Enduro biker and rally driver, David Rayner, who registered it as B2 WRX and kept it as an adrenaline-generating road car for over 40,000 road miles over nearly ten years. Shortly after his purchase, our vendor arranged for WRC specialists, Autosportif Engineering, to rebuild the engine and to check the rest of the package. It remains exactly as it was built with the exception of a 'Group N' baffled sump and a longer final-drive suitable for UK-motorway speeds. The car comes with a second set of wheels, engine bash guard, spare low-ratio gearbox and final-drive together with a standard exhaust system. It will have a fresh MOT prior to the sale and is accompanied by its V5C, items of correspondence and the usual invoices etc. This is a rare car indeed, one of only a few hundred MY97 Type Rs, one of only 20 selected by the factory to be sent to Prodrive, and one of only four built to a ‘recce’ specification.