£260000 - £310000
1985 MG Metro 6R4 Works Rally Car
Registration Number: C874 EUD
Chassis Number: #134
- The 1986 Austin Rover Motorsport test and development and recce car
- One of only five works cars in this chassis sequence
- Three private owners with extensive period rally history
The MG Metro 6R4 is one of the unsung hairy-chested heroes of the legendary Group B rally era. Co-developed by Williams F1, and unlike its Group B turbocharged rivals, the 6R4 was fitted with a 400hp+ naturally-aspirated V6 driving through all four wheels. The name “6R4” stands for “6-cylinder, Rally, 4-wheel drive.”
Ayrton Senna and Colin McRae at the time both declared the 6R4 the ultimate driver's car, McRae in fact commissioned two to enjoy when not competing. If Winston Churchill were a car, he'd be a 6R4; pugnacious, powerful, daring and different. The great British defender of the realm.
Five 6R4 works specification chassis were registered with the EUD suffix in November of 1985, C867 EUD, C868 EUD, C869 EUD, C870 EUD and finally the last chassis, C874 EUD.
These Works prepared chassis were ordered by the Works to full International 410bhp specification, to be pressed into competition immediately with the Lombard RAC Rally of November 1985, which was entered by C867 EUD driven by Malcom Wilson, and C869 EUD in the very capable hands of Tony Pond, who finished 3rd overall.
C868 EUD and C870 EUD went on to debut with Wilson and Pond at the Monte Carlo Rally the following January, C872 EUD was destined for a short career in tarmac rallying in the hands of Tony Morgan, which leaves our car, C874 EUD.
Initially pressed into service as the 1986 test and development car, and works recce car for Pond and Wilson, after the demise of Group B in 1986, 874 became the National Test car for 1987 before going on to have prolific and highly successful rallying career in the hands of privateer Donald Milne. Taking up rallying to “relax” from his business commitments, Milne was a committed and passionate driver and a mentor to a teenage Colin McRae, often lending young Colin cars in order to get his career moving.
Milne acquired 874 after the end of Group B, in response to the advert placed by Austin-Rover's Mike Capon in Motorsport Magazine on 22nd October 1987, a copy of which is in the file.
Milne modified 874 to qualify for Clubman 2.5 litre category rallies. In this guise 874 rallied from 1988 through to 1992, participating in 17 rallies across the United Kingdom, winning the Esso Scottish Rally Championship in 1991 and competing as far abroad as Indonesia in the Starko Rally of 1988. For 1989 874 went to prolific rally driver Peter Lloyd, finishing second in the Welsh SGC Printing Harry Flatters tarmac rally, also the Metro 6R4 Trophy Race supporting the FIA Formula 3000 Birmingham Super Prix race, which incidentally was won by Tony Pond.
The Metro 6R4 continued to participate in events such as the 1990 Johnstons & Paton Rally in Argyll (which it won), and 3rd on the Scotphone Stages. In 1994 Milne teamed up again with Bob Wilson and wheeled out the MG Metro 6R4 once more. He started the season with a bang, winning the Snowman, finishing 3rd on the Valentine behind George Gauld and Neale Dougan, and then beat arch rival David Gillanders to the victory on the Granite City. He next won the Weldex ahead of Dougan and was 12th on the RSAC Scottish after trouble with the car, and that was it, rallying finished.
In 1994, having done everything he had hoped to do in 874, Milne decided to hand the baton over to a new custodian, in stepped fellow collector and enthusiast James Leask, who kept the 6R4 in his collection for a further 9 years before title passed to our current vendor. Our client, a noted racing and collector, acquired 874 in 2003, proceeding to return it to its correct 1985 Works specification. The engine was rebuilt to full International specification by highly regarded specialist Goodmans, fuelled by the correct Lucas injection system. The body was stripped of paint and returned to period-correct Computervision livery.
C874 EUD is offered complete with FIA papers and a UK V5C Registration Document, and period RAC logbooks and scrutineering signatures, documenting rallies entered over it’s career. Also included are period magazine articles relating to our car, in addition to several images and prints of the vehicle in competition.
In these uncertain times, Group B cars with competition history represent the gold standard for collectors. Iconic and successful, only a handful of works Group B Metro 6R4 rally cars still exist.
Of all Group B cars, the 6R4 is the easiest and most affordable to run. With spare parts and deep knowledge in abundance this car has the greatest utility of any racing car. There are few thoroughbred machines that an owner can run themselves without factory support throw around a circuit and drive to the shops to pick up the Sunday papers.
C874 EUD, this wonderful survivor, with continuous ownership history from new, is placed directly on the scene of a legendary period in rallying.