All the classes, national and FIA groups into which Rally Cars are divided in Italy and around the world
Rally car classes, categories and groups. How are they divided and what are the characteristics by which they are distinguished? In this simple and intuitive guide we try to understand something more. A guide dedicated above all to enthusiasts which allows, when you go to see a Rally, to better identify the differences between the various cars.
THE PRINCIPLES ACCORDING TO WHICH CATEGORIES ARE CREATED
In order to allow more competitive races, Rally cars are divided and grouped into classes sharing similar mechanical characteristics, so as to level out the values on the field. In general, the division into classes is determined on the basis of:
- Displacement : example 1000 cc, 1400 cc, 1500 cc, 1600 cc, 2000 cc
- Power : turbo or aspirated
- Drive : front, rear or all-wheel drive
- Frame : standard base or custom made
Based on these basic principles, the FIA, with the creation of the new “RALLY” groups (1, 2, 3, 4, 5), also introduced a new value, the weight/power ratio, so as to identify a clear distinction also based on the power available (and therefore the performance ) of the various cars. These are and increasingly will be the cars that we will see racing in modern rallies.
- Rally 5 : 2-wheel drive, 1.0 turbo engine, approximately 150 hp
- Rally 4 : 2-wheel drive, 1.2 turbo engine, approximately 200 hp
- Rally 3 : 4-wheel drive, 1.5 turbo engine, approximately 215 hp
- Rally 2 : 4-wheel drive, 1.6 turbo engine, approximately 290 hp
- Rally 1 : 4-wheel drive, 1.6 turbo engine, approximately 380 hp
Each Group and Class is precisely characterized by extremely specific regulations which define all the mechanical specifications. These regulations can be found on the ACI Sport (Italian Federation) or FIA website .
DO YOU WANT TO BECOME A RALLY DRIVER OR CODRIVER?
Take a look to all of our Rally Courses for drivers and Rally Courses for Codrivers
RALLY CAR CATEGORIES IN ITALY (OLD SUBDIVISION)
While even in Italy the cars belonging to the new FIA categories are becoming increasingly crowded with Rally2 and Rally4 dominating the starting scene, the national classes continue to find a place in our local rallies. We therefore also indicate these subdivisions, without considering any regulatory changes that may provide for their unification or subdivision. In any case, every new Rally car imported into Italy is now part of the new FIA groups previously indicated.
The old classification provides for the division of cars into:
- GROUPS – Large families characterized by specific techniques that unite the various classes
- CLASSES – subgroups whose subdivision is for example made between different engine sizes between cars belonging to the same group.
The Groups No
Cars fundamentally derived from series models, they were the cars that, especially in the past, could be made “in house”. Front-wheel drive, or 4×4, they have H-shaped gearboxes, front clutches and a basically standard engine.
The R Groups
Cars whose chassis has been prepared by an authorized manufacturer. Characterized by greater torsional rigidity than the N Groups, they can have a sequential gearbox (even at the steering wheel) and important engine preparation steps. They can be either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
The maximum expression of international rallying, they are cars with unique characteristics, all-wheel drive and equipped with the maximum preparation allowed for rally cars. These are the cars that participate in the WRC, World Rally Championship.
RGT, Groups A, Historic Cars and other National Classes
These are respectively super cars, advanced evolutions of Group N, historic cars or cars with different regulations, often created to encourage young drivers to race and created to fill gaps between the above-mentioned classes.
Based on what has been said, we list the main classes and groups of rally cars in Italy, which indicates, for example, the difference in displacement between one and the other.