General => Historic Cars and Designers => Topic started by: Tony on September 06, 2006, 17:49:17 PM

Title: Ford RS-200
Post by: Tony on September 06, 2006, 17:49:17 PM
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In 1982 Ford needed to homolagate 200 cars to enter rallying's Group "B", their previous attempt (the RS 1700T) had failed miserably. So the RS 200 was built purely for motorsport. Tony Southgate and John Wheeler (Ford F1 designers) both submitted ideas for the car although the original RS200 chassis came almost completely from Tony Southgate. However before unveiling at the 1984 Turin motorshow, the car had been fully redesigned by John Wheeler and his team. Exactly 200 cars were built in total (6 prototypes) at the Reliant Shenstone (Staffordshire) factory.
The car was a clean sheet design four wheel drive two seater coupe (the styling was by Ghia) and used hi-tech materials, however some parts (such as the doors, wing mirrors, and window glass) were sourced from other Ford cars, for example the rear tail lights came from a Sierra.

The RS200's GRP bodywork was manufactured by Reliant (famous for the Robin/Kitten 3/4 wheeler as well as the Scmitar) who had great experience in fibre-glass mouldings, unlike Ford. Reliant also influenced some RS200 design points.

The car had a complex (in what it did) yet simple (in the way it went about it) transmission from FF developments. It had 3 different torque splits: fully rear wheel drive (for fast tarmac stages), 63:37 (rear bias for multi purpose use), and 50:50 (for when the going got tough). The torque split could be selected on the move, ie without stopping. However this feature was disabled on many road cars. The car also had three viscous couplings to put the power down where it was needed.

The engines were Cosworth BDT units left over from the RS1700T, but bored out to 1804cc to get around certain regulations (FISA allowed an increase 16.7% increase in capacity for evolution engines which took the BDT to 2.1 litres, convienenty at the RS 200's class capacity limit). In standard specification the engines were ridiculously under stressed for reliability ("only" 250 horses) although more powerful motors were avalible for order.

When FISA banned Group B Ford was in trouble. The RS200s that had been made were not only of full rally spec but were also poorly put together as they were made in a rush to get to meet homolgation date. Although normally these cars could have been sold off to other rally teams this was obviously no longer an option. The £10 million pumped into the RS200 project had to be recouped somehow so some cars were stripped down for parts and the other cars were properly rebuilt and retrimmed as a luxury car. These cars were gradually sold off over the next five or so years to wealthy buyers.

FISA would allow special "Evolution" models of cars as long as their production run was not less than 10% of the original model. For this reason Ford built 24 of the RS200s to evolution spec. This meant all round improvements to brakes, suspension etc, and a 2.1 litre 550 bhp BDT-E engine which had been specially tuned by Hart Motorsport. However several RS200s have been upgraded to evolution spec since.

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Type: Ford-Cosworth BDT
Capacity:     1804cc
Bore/stroke: 86 x 77.6 mm
Compression ratio: 8.2:1 (nominal), plus turbocharging to 11.0 psi/0.75 Bar
Max power:   250 bhp(DIN)at 6500-7000 rpm
Max torque:   215 lbf.ft at 4500-5000 rpm
Specific output: 138.5 bhp per litre
Power/weight ratio: 211.8 bhp/tonne
Cylinders: four, in-line, longitudinally-mounted
Cylinder head: cast aluminium
Block: cast aluminium
Valve gear: four valves per cylinder, operated by twin overhead camshafts via inverted bucket-type tappets
Fuel and ignition: Ford fuel injection, with Ford EEC-lV engine management system, Garrett AiResearch TO3/4 turbocharger and charge air intercooling
Installation: mid-engine, longitudinally-mounted

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Title: RS 200
Post by: mark 24v on March 19, 2007, 17:51:06 PM
these cars are awesome.
Title: RS 200
Post by: dulux on March 23, 2007, 11:13:54 AM
Quote from: maddoldbugger
Exactly 200 cars were built in total (6 prototypes) at the Reliant Shenstone (Staffordshire) factory.

I remember seeing these driving around the village and local lanes before I knew what they were, 'cos I lived just down the road from that old Reliant factory.

Great looking motor....always wanted to have a thrash in one  
Title: RS 200
Post by: scud on June 19, 2009, 15:26:50 PM
I sat in one once , part of the hendy collection i think it was . . nice but a bit cramped  :O)
Title: RS 200
Post by: sierra3dr on June 20, 2009, 09:14:21 AM
I want one,I keep window shopping]  the others Audi Quattro S1, Lancia Delta S4 Lancia 037  205 Turbo 16.
In the later Rally years,the Citroen Xantia has been brought to my attention recently]
Title: RS 200
Post by: Matt on August 28, 2009, 19:39:05 PM
I found footage of an official crash test of the RS200 on youtube]
Title: Re: Ford RS-200
Post by: sierra3dr on July 13, 2013, 09:36:25 AM
Had to giggle at the clown,Jeremy Clarkson almost doing an unintentional crash test ;D  Apparently,they weren't made with the best sound deadening,they are noisy,according to a chap who has a unit next to me.  He use to work at HM Customs were they seized one,amongst other vehicles