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Audi Quattro: all-wheel drive dominance

22 October, 2015


Audi Quattros have a very dear place in my heart. My first car was a 1989 Audi 90 Quattro, complete with five-cylinder 10-valve KV engine. It was fairly gutless, the drivetrain was heavy, and the engine was so far in front of the strut towers that it would understeer terribly. However, the beautiful sound that the slanted five-cylinder engine produced, the traction the five-speed all-wheel drive gearbox gave you, and the quirk of owning an older European vehicle makes it a car that I’ll remember for years to come.

Manuel Leon Minassian has been a fan of the Audi Quattro since he was young. He tells tales of spotting them parked outside his school as a teenager and the feelings it gave him. Now he has his very own Audi Quattro coupe, the UR-Quattro, complete with the 10-valve turbocharged five-cylinder engine — a truly iconic Quattro that is already classed as a collector’s item. Watch the video Petrolicious produced about Manuel’s passion for the Audi brand, and his own Quattro coupe.

Taipan – surpassing interest

“It’s merely a passing interest,” insists Selby — despite owning three variants of the classic VW Beetle, including an unusual VW van that was sold as a body kit for a Subaru. In his defence he points to a 1961 Ford Thunderbird, a car that he converted to right-hand drive. However, on the VW side of the ledger, since he opened Allison Autos in Whanganui 27 years ago, Selby has built 15 VW-powered Formula First cars, followed by a beach buggy, restored a derelict Karmann Ghia, and hot-rodded a common or garden Beetle into something that has to be seen to be believed. As speed is not something generally associated with classic VWs, though, Selby is still waiting for this particular modification to catch on amongst the hot rod faithful.

Travelling companion

It’s easy to see why the Morris Minor Traveller was one of the best-loved variants of the Morris Minor. Introduced in 1953, it was equipped with the same independent torsion bar front suspension, drum brakes, and rack and pinion steering as its saloon sibling but, with their foldable rear seat increasing versatility, many Travellers were used as trade vehicles, says Derek Goddard. Derek and Gail Goddard, the owners of this superbly restored example, have run Morris Minors since before they were married in 1974.
“Our honeymoon vehicle was a blue Morris Minor van — it was a rust bucket,” says Derek.