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Author: Bart Maes

R-Box misses the start of a new chapter due to a banal issue during the Rally des Ardennes.

A few seconds before the start of FP1, a blood-red injector symbol appeared on our dash with an equally unpromising number linked to it. It was immediately painfully clear that the engine had to make do with far too little fuel due to a fuel pressure problem.

We got off the start line with difficulty and while sputtering and stuttering we finally reached the finish of FP1 with considerable time loss. Unfortunately, the problems persisted and the course of the 2nd special stage was copy and paste of the previous one, resulting in even more time loss.

Tabula rasa with the program

We would have liked to have seen it differently, but we are forced to postpone the debut with the Toyota GT86 CS-R3. Is that the result of corona or the war in Ukraine, we don’t know. The fact is that a number of crucial parts are lagging behind and we do not yet have an accurate view of new delivery times. Pinning ourselves down on new data makes little sense.

The first liters of gasoline…

As already mentioned in the previous post, we have had a completely new engine built at Gazoo.

We were allowed to change the engine ourselves but the “run in” procedure had to be done by a Gazoo engineer for which we went to BTD in Malmedy on Friday. The screenplay seemed to come straight out of an SM movie with a chained main character, a soundproof cage and an excess of abuse.

No gold, frankincense and myrrh, but a new update

Although the GT86 saw the light of day in 2016, it still has 0 kilometers on the odometer and has never seen a rally test up close. Nevertheless, we are working on all kinds of updates, so that the car is fully compliant with the latest spec as provided at the time by TMG, the current Toyota Gazoo Racing.

For example, it got a brand new power source from their workshops in Cologne, with the latest updates. The startup and run-in is planned for one of the next weeks and will be done by an engine engineer from Gazoo.

R-Box 2.023 goes Toyota!

Despite our enthusiasm, sky-high commitment and perseverance, we have to throw in the towel and the BMW E30 M3 story is put to an end. The ratio fun/cost derailed completely and common sense has forced us to pull the plug on the project.

Of course, the end of the M3 story doesn’t mean we’ll stop rallying. On the contrary, we are more motivated than ever and start again with a clean slate, a brand new car and tons of enthusiasm!

From the first second it was certain that it was going to be a rear-wheel drive car again. However, the availability of these is getting smaller and smaller. We briefly considered staying in the BMW family, in the form of an E36, E46 or 1 Series with a rock-solid S54 engine. But looking to the future, we were no longer convinced of this.

We took a completely different approach and went shopping at Toyota Gazoo Racing in Cologne, where we put one of the last remaining Toyota GT86 CS-R3s in our shopping cart.

It is not immediately the fastest R3, but it is a real factory car with a high fun content and rear-wheel drive! In addition, it does not look particularly bad and the flat-4 sound makes it a bit typical. We fell in love instantly.

In any case, R-Box is ready for a new adventure from 2023!

See you then!

Report Rallye de Trois-Ponts 2022

Unfortunately, it has become 2 bridges instead of 3!

The Trois-Ponts rally was the first on the R-Box rally calendar 2022 and was mainly intended to get race kilometers in the legs and to evaluate the winter updates.

A lot of hard work has been done on the car in the winter months, and as usual this again results in numerous updates. Obviously, the pain point from the past, the entire charging system, has been completely reviewed and renewed. Because we love challenges, we have also completely mixed up our note system.

Add to that the refreshing -7°C at the start of the first test, and all the necessary ingredients were present to have no idea how the first kilometers were going to go.