1985 MG Metro 6R4 Group B: “as-new” never registered car for auction

By: Alex Affat, Unique Cars magazine

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NOS Metro 6R4 front quarter NOS Metro 6R4 front quarter
NOS Metro 6R4 rear quarter NOS Metro 6R4 rear quarter
NOS Metro 6R4 rear NOS Metro 6R4 rear
NOS Metro 6R4 side profile NOS Metro 6R4 side profile
NOS Metro 6R4 interior NOS Metro 6R4 interior
NOS Metro 6R4 odometer NOS Metro 6R4 odometer
NOS Metro 6R4 engine NOS Metro 6R4 engine

A ‘new old stock’ Group B rally car with just seven miles on the clock

The MG Metro was a humdrum city car that sold in huge numbers throughout 1980 to 1998.

It was also known as the Austin Metro, Rover Metro and later the Rover 100; and was powered by either a 998cc or 1275cc A-Series engine sourced from the Mini.

In pedestrian car guise, its performance was as bland as its looks; but the fearsome world of Group B Rally saw Metro transform the little hatchback into a fire-breathing Cosworth V6-powered all-wheel drive monster.

200 were produced in ‘Clubman’ spec, yielding a de-tuned 250hp and sold publically to achieve Group B Homologation. On the World Rally stage; the MG Metro 6R4 showed much promise with a third place finish at its Group B debut at Lombard in 1985. Overall though, the car was largely hampered by teething issues up until Group B was disbanded by 1987.

NOS-Metro-6R4-rear-quarter.jpg

This 1985 Metro 6R4 is unique in that it is likely the only never-registered, "brand new" ‘Group B’ rally car in the world. And it’s being auctioned through Silverstone Auctions this July at their Classic Sale 2019.

The odometer reads just seven miles since new, and has never been touched by the rain. It’s been "dry cleaned" for its entire life and presents exactly as delivered in its factory wax coating.

The car was purchased by its first owner directly in December 1986, as a kit with full assembly instructions (delivery photo and original assembly instructions included in extensive history file) and was transported to the owner’s home in Oxfordshire.

The owner bought the car as a kit in order to build it up himself to avoid "Type Approval".

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However, the car remained on stands in the garage until May 1996, when the late-owner’s widow contacted the Donnington Museum and offered the Metro on long-term storage loan to the museum. It was delivered to the museum in September 1996.

The car remained at the Donnington museum until 2002, when it came under the ownership of the current vendor with the odometer reading just five miles.

The car presents today with two further miles travelled, as the owner would run up the engine and drivetrain on jack stands over the past 17 years in his care.

NOS-Metro-6R4-interior.jpg

The sale includes the original assembly manual, all purchase contract correspondence, letters to the original owner to Donnington, and a number of photographs.

Silverstone Auctions state that it would be feasibly possible to prepare the Metro for National Rallies and Rallycross, and it would likely be quite competitive, however much of the car’s value comes from its spectacularly unused state.

It’s estimated to fetch between AU$322,000 to AU$386,000 when it crosses the block at Silverstone’s Classic Sale 2019, this July.

 

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