No, really. A Legacy with Burns and Vatanen in its past could be yours.
If you want to buy a 1993 Subaru Legacy, you should probably budget around a grand. Tops.
That’s if you can even find one for sale. This one, though, is expected to sell at auction for well over a hundred times that.
But then which car, with names like Richard Burns and Ari Vatanen among its previous ‘owners’, wouldn’t? It doesn’t take a super sleuth to identify this as a very special Subaru. Not least because of the blue’n’yellow 555 livery that the Impreza went on to make its own.
The Legacy came first, though, and this RS comes in Group A rally spec. It has a 2.0-litre turbo engine producing around 290bhp and 290lb ft. It’s four-wheel drive – naturally – with the power channelled through a six-speed manual gearbox and managed by a viscous coupling centre differential and limited-slip diffs front and back.
Still unsure of the credibility of buying a Legacy rally car, not an Impreza? Colin McRae’s upward trajectory includes a British Rally Championship title in a Legacy RS as a fresh-faced 23-year-old. His first ever World Rally win was also in one of these, netting the Legacy its first ever WRC victory at the same time.
The history of this specific car is quite cool, too. Produced in 1993, it’s an example of the Legacy in its twilight years, as the Impreza prepared to take over. It led the Acropolis Rally at the hands of Ari Vatanen – you might have heard of him – leading people like Tommi Makinen, Juha Kankkunen and that McRae fella in the process, before crashing out right near the end.
It returned to Prodrive, who put together Subaru’s nineties and noughties rally cars, to be rebuilt before being sold on to an Italian team. Various drivers competed in it, including Burns, who took it to second in the Bettega Memorial Rallysprint in 1995.
It changed hands a few more times, and even lived a life in safari rally spec, before being bought by the Richard Burns Collection in 2008, who commissioned a full rebuild to its original condition. One that called in Prodrive experts and technical drawings. A proper job, then.
You see it here returned to its spec and setup from that 1993 day at the Acropolis Rally, right down to the coding of the ECU. It’s being auctioned on February 23rd by Silverstone Auctions, having covered a mere 60 miles since the rebuild.
A fact which leads its eventual owner – who’ll likely have spent Porsche 911 Turbo or Audi R8 Plusmoney on it – to decide whether to scurry it away into protection, or unleash it to complete its unfinished business on the stages.
If we had the money, guess what we’d do…
Main image: LAT Other images: Silverstone Auctions