Many of you may know that great 205 GTI I posted last week. There was a 205 Rallye as well, a nimble more-old-school carburetted sporty 205 with steelies. But Peugeot didn’t get the Rallye-name from their own line-up. It was Simca that started it all with the Simca 1000 Rallye. More on that one later, as first I’ll show you the car that was chronological between the Simca and the Peugeot: The Talbot Samba Rallye.
And it was a turbulent time. PSA (Peugeot) had taken over Simca from Chrysler Europe, dusted off the old Talbot-brand and had a new line-up of cars under that name. The Talbot Samba was hugely based on the Peugeot 104, actually the term badge-engineering is appropriate on this one.
But Simca and Talbot had a history of creating nimble sporty cars. The Simca 1000 Rallye still was used in club-events and the Talbot Sunbeam Lotus (more on that one in a later FF-post from me) became 1981’s WRC-champion. So a sporty version of this one was eminent.
And Peugeot was already pretty successful with the 104 ZS2 in Group 2. So Talbot mounted a 90hp 1219cc engine with two twin-choke 40DCOE Webers, mounted a hood-scoop and added some striping. It was only available in two non-metallic colors: either red or white.
And PTS, Peugeot Talbot Sport, even licensed it for... Group B! Jean Todt, of Ferrari-F1 fame, was commissioned to make a small budget Group B as an answer to Citroën’s Visa Mille Pistes. And yes: Citroën was part of the PSA-group already. I told you it was a wicked and turbulent time.
But Group B, wasn’t that a set of rally-regulations resulting in cars with a gazillion horse-power eventually banned for killing people due to these monstrosities? Yes it was. But Group B had different classes and this was in the “under 1300cc”-class.
And with just 675 kgs (fiberglass hood, trunk doors) and 130hp it wasn’t bad at all. But, as in the road-going version, the Peugeot 205 stole it’s shine. The 205T16 was a huge success in Group B. The 205 GTI was introduced. And while that GTI was more expensive and barely quicker it overshadowed this nimble Talbot completely. I can’t remember seeing a Talbot Rallye for a very long time...
But as I said: Available in either white or red only. So here it is: a red one as well. But hey: where’s that striping? The striping disappeared when Talbot introduced it’s phase deux. A slightly bigger/torquey-er engine with less power, somewhat less hardcore. The red one above isn’t a Rallye though. It has that same 80 hp-engine but another...
Roof! Introduced in 1982 it was designed and produced by Pininfarina. Again: way before Peugeot’s own 205 which came to market 4 years later. Over 13000 units of these were made and this one was a more common sight than the Rallye back then. Even in the rainy Netherlands. It might have been the cheapest cabriolet on the market back then, not entirely sure though.
The Samba Cabriolet got his 5 minutes of fame when our good friend Jeremy Clarkson hurled one into a wall for one of his DVD’s. That Samba was even faster than the Group B edition as it reached over 160 mph. Before it crashed. Measured by a Gatsometer.
The more I look at these Sambas, the more I start to want one. A future classic for sure. But mainly because everyone seems to have forgotten about it anyway. It’s just so rare.
Both these models are from Altaya in 1/43. The front seems a bit of when looking from really close as the headlights look too “flat”. And one thing the really did wrong was the headlights of the Rallye anyway as these really need to be YELLOW!
They did try to create those with the cabriolet but if you told me those lense were just getting old due to ultraviolet “aging” I would have believed it instantly. Nevertheless: Very glad to have these.
They’re nicely boxed with a pictured “diorama” and the specifications on a card. Not quite clear to me why Altaya decided to still display that Simca-logo on both card and base though.
C’est ca! One more shot to go. After Tinfoils creativity I had to try something new myself. But I’m afraid this may lead to new time-issues in my agenda. As I don’t need a new hobby. So let’s just keep it to animated gifs...