1983 WRC Season Commentary

1983 WRC Summary by Chris Biewer :

For the makes points situation the transition period still causes hick ups. From 1983 only group B, A & N cars are allowed to score makes points. Therefore group 4 & 2 cars are ignored from the overall positions. While makes points were still awarded only to top10 overall with group bonuses. I.e. the car in 11th place could be counted as 10th if it had a group 4 car ahead.

Let's explain the confusion on the example of Subaru. Noriyuki Koseki carries on operating with little luck. On the Safari Rally he must hold the record of team retirements. Yet 2 of his cars make it into the top10. Both being group 2 they don't qualify for points. Then privateer Possum Bourne puts the record straight in NZ. With his group A Subaru Possum finishes a maybe disappointing 14th overall. As there are many cars of old groups ahead of him, this counts as 6th overall, plus class bonus makes 13points, which is as good as you would normally get for 4th overall! At any point before 1983 there would have never been points considered for 14th place.

The 1983 event calendar was very much the same of previous years. Only the Rally do Brasil was too much of a disappointment the previous season when it was a poorly supported entry field in poorly selected stages combined with poor organising, and only 5 crews made it to the finish. With the Falklands War out of the way, to swap Brasil for Argentina seemed an obvious thing to do.

Sweden and Bandama count to the driver WRChampionship only and best 7 results are counted.

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The 1983 season seems almost too straightforward. For a start, in it’s fifth year the driver WRChampionship has for the first time a reigning World Champion with a decent drive and a chance to defend his title, although he actually says he doesn't want another World title.

The days of the conventional cars are eventually over. Audi and Lancia are too dominant to allow any giant killing acts. Indeed 1983 is nothing else but an Audi and Lancia affair. However, it is interesting to note that Audi and Lancia have extremely different ideas about how to conquer "modern" rallying. Audi's 4x4 turbo charged concept appears to be clearly superior to Lancia's RWD mid-engined supercharged solution. But the combination of Audi's fragile technik and Lancia's weight advantage turn the season into a far more exciting and closer battle of these two totally different concepts than most would have dared to predict.

One of several examples was the tough, rough gravel Rally Acropolis where the 4x4 Audis should have been at a huge and obvious advantage. But it was the lightweight mid-engined racer that stayed smooth and consistent all the way to grab the 1-2 from under Audi's nose.

In the end, Lancia, with the help of 1982 drivers champ Röhrl, steal the makes title from Audi by 2 points with Audi’s Hannu Mikkola becoming an overdue drivers champ.
 

1983 WRC Factory Team and Driver Line Ups :
 

Lancia Lancia, 1983 - Martini Racing Lancia Abarth : 1st on 118 points.
 

 

No

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Audi Audi, 1983 - Audi Sport : 2nd on 116 points.
 

 

No

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Opel Opel, 1983 - Rothmans Opel Rally Team : 3rd on 87 points.
 

 

No

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Nissan Nissan, 1983 - Nismo : 4th on 64 points.
 

 

No

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Renault Renault, 1983 - Régie Renault : 5th on 27 points.
 

 

No

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Toyota Toyota, 1983 - TTE : 6th on 24 points.
 

 

No

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Peugeot Peugeot, 1983 - Peugeot Talbot Sport : 7th on 18 points.
 

 

No

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Subaru Subaru, 1983 - STI Nurijuki Koseki : 8th on 13 points.
 

 

No

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MG Rover MG Rover, 1983 - BL Cars : 9th on 11 points.
 

 

No

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Volkswagen Volkswagen, 1983 - Volkswagen Motorsport : 10th on 11 points.
 

 

No

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Mazda Mazda, 1983 - Mazda : 11th on 9 points.
 

 

No

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Citroën Citroën, 1983 - Citroën Sport : 12th on 9 points.
 

 

No

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Mitsubishi Mitsubishi, 1983 - Denzel Ralli Art : 13th on 7 points.
 

 

No

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