To me it’s indisputable that Colin McRae was one of the most badass rally drivers ever. The dude was 100% fearless, always looked like he was having a good time, the youngest driver ever to win the WRC driver’s title, and arguably helped cement Subaru’s legacy as a rally giant.
And, like only the most badass can, he had his own car designed and built for him, according to his own specs: the DJM R4. Weighing only 1000kg, this was a fast machine. Maybe not that fast compared to today’s WRC cars, but in 2006 a 0-60 time of 3.4 seconds was nothing to sneeze at. 335BHP/240lb.ft again sounds pretty tame compared to today’s “ideal driver’s car” specs (I’m thinking here of Ken Block’s Fiestas built to his standards, squeezing 650hp out of 1.6 liters), but still plenty of power for a 1000kg car.
This is a 1:43 example by Corgi Vanguards and to me is a mixed bag. The model has some nice touches, like delicate little wing mirrors, an nicely textured rear wing, visible cooling fans in the hood scoop, a nicely detailed (though colorless) interior, and nicely rolling wheels.
But it was also a pain in the rear to photograph, as the model has very little definition. It kind of came out like a big red blob. Perhaps partially due to it being based on a Ford Ka body, but also because of the seemingly inches-thick layer of paint. The black-liveried version that also exists is much nicer, in my opinion.
But as a fan of McRae’s, this is a cool piece in my collection, so I’ll take it rather than leave it. Plus, the story behind its development is pretty impressive: it was basically designed by race preparers DJM along with the guys who did the Colin McRae Rally video game, making it a very old version of a Gran Turismo concept perhaps.
Enjoy your Thursday, my fellow LaLDers, and excuse my crappy photos. The time for a much better camera is fast approaching, I think.
I couldn’t find a good video of the DJM R4 on the move, but here is some vintage Colin McRae: