Build Your Own Rally Car: 1989 Merkur XR4ti

If you’ve ever wanted to go rallying, now’s your chance with this rally-prepped 1989 Merkur XR4ti that the seller claims comes with loads of spare Cosworth parts and other upgrades. As the above photo shows, he’s apparently getting out of the Merkur game, despite speaking in the present tense as if the build is still ongoing. Regardless, the Buy-It-Now of $3,600 seems cheap for everything you get. Find it here on eBay with the option to submit a best offer. 

When you see photos like this, it’s hard to suppress the urge to build a track car of some kind. The listing reports impressive power to the wheels thanks to a healthy supply of boost, and the body looks surprisingly solid and straight. Apparently, he didn’t run into too many trees unlike the drivers depicted in countless YouTube videos.

The read-out of parts that have been installed on this Merkur is like the United Nations of rally car building, as Saab, Toyota, and Lincoln all make an appearance. The engine reportedly puts down 230 b.h.p. at full boost, and mileage on the motor is reported to be around 5,000. The seller notes that the Merkur is also equipped with a T5 transmission, Koni adjustable shocks / struts, and a turbo-back exhaust.

It’s apparent that the insides have been stripped down for weight-savings, with no signs of major rot-through. The driver gets a Recaro seat and the strength of a full-length AL diamond skid plate underneath their feet. Also noted is what spares are included, which the seller describes as “….a wide array of motor parts,enough to make two spare motors, spare hood and rear hatch with bi wing.” What do you think – is this an affordable way to get into racing, or would you want to start with your own car from scratch?

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Comments

  1. Beatnik Bedouin

    Looks like great fun on a budget. I’m sure one of those Cosworths, with the appropriate 5-speed transmission (the original Type-9 would disintegrate in seconds with all that extra HP), would be a nice swap into my Low Sierra wagon… ;-)

  2. local_sheriff

    That is an enormous pile of parts!While I understand that’s a rally car, it would make a great drifting car too

  3. Sheffieldcortinacentre

    Don’t see the cossy parts? Only Sierra ones.

  4. SquareLeft

    Please note: This is a rallyCROSS car. Turning this into something that would pass either ARA or NASA inspection for a logbook is a long way (and a lot of $$) off. I get asked about building rally cars at least a half-dozen times a year. I always tell the questioners the same thing: Please don’t try to build your own first stage-rally car! Buy a good used one that already has a current logbook! You can spend thousands of dollars and do your best to follow the rulebook only to get tripped up by subtle shadings of interpretation. 30 years ago, this wasn’t nearly the problem it is today. Both the U.S. rally organizations (as well as CASC in Canada) are now extremely safety conscious.

    If you’re looking to buy something like this to compete at local rallycrosses, $3,600 probably isn’t a bad deal. But, unless you’re an experienced competition car builder, taking your dreams to the next level could easily cost 10 times your initial investment.

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