Posted Nov 4th 2013 11:58AM
There I was, standing next to this 1984 Audi Sport Quattro painted Malachite Green – one of only 15 units ever delivered in said colour – in the northern Italian mountain town of Merano. I was about to be encouraged to tear-ass over a few famous high altitude passes in this short-wheelbase iconic machine.
The Sport Quattro street version was a homologation program car to let the Audi S1 Group B cars qualify to go nuts in the World Rally Championship circuit in the mid-1980s. So, only roughly so many as were necessary for this homologation were built (in this case 214 total) and sold at really heady prices ($100k+ back in the day), hence the rarity of having any shot at actually driving one of them over the types of roads for which they were really designed. Much less driving it as it was meant to be driven to the best of my abilities.
Once upon a time, short wheelbase sportscars were the cure for finding maximum agility. The theory was to make them as tossable as possible in order to make curves your allies in beating pants off your competition. With quattro all-wheel drive, the tossing with the Sport Quattro is different, the goal being to get set up on the right line so you can then just hammer it through and out, thereby making the absolute most of every subsequent (relatively) straight section.
Click here to read our full driving notes on this classic quick spin.