Motor (Australia)

TIME TO HIT THE GYM

Pastrana and co go retro for the next Gymkhana instalment

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GIVEN FREE REIN and a hefty manufactur­er budget to choose from, we would have expected action sports legend Travis Pastrana to pick something wild as his next Gymkhana film chariot.

However, the reigning Nitro Rallycross champion isn’t one for predictabl­e, and has instead opted for a 1983 Subaru GL Wagon.

When it was first revealed, the GL Wagon’s 1.8-litre, naturally aspirated flat-four produced just 53kW and 127Nm – probably not quite up to Gymkhana’s tyreshredd­ing standards.

That’s why Pastrana has let his race car builders at Vermont SportsCar and the cultural mad scientists at Hoonigan loose on the GL, creating what you see before you. Wild is an understate­ment.

Starting with an already boxy-looking GL Wagon, the VSC and Hoonigan crew have given it massively flared arches, wide bronze wheels shod in Yokohama tyres, a revised grille, front and rear bumpers as well as roof racks – just in case you need to go sideways on the way to the beach or the Alps.

Although Subaru hasn’t revealed specifics about the new wagon, it’s tipped to be developing a touch under 700kW, all while retaining the design of a flying brick. There’s no avoiding the fact that 700kW is a bucket load of power, but it still won’t be enough to make Pastrana the quickest Red Bull sponsored vehicular action star.

Enter New Zealand’s ‘Mad’ Mike Whiddett, who is cooking up something very special for this year’s 100th running of the Pikes Peak Internatio­nal Hillclimb.

The rotary-obsessed drifter announced he is currently building a rear-wheel drive Mazda3 to take on the Race To The Clouds.

To ensure he makes enough power at the top of the course’s more than four kilometre elevation the profession­al drifter is fitting the once pedestrian hatchback with a four-rotor turbocharg­ed engine producing 895kW.

Oh, and the exhaust pokes through the bonnet. We wouldn’t expect anything less from someone with the nickname Mad Mike.

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Yes, this is endlessly cool. But what if it had been a Subaru Brumby? Now that’s an idea... you read it here first
ABOVE Yes, this is endlessly cool. But what if it had been a Subaru Brumby? Now that’s an idea... you read it here first
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