15-16 January 2015

Previous Next

Lot 247

1984 Audi Sport Quattro

  • Chassis no. WAUZZZ85ZEA905147

Sold for $401,500

302 hp, 2,133 cc DOHC 20-valve alloy-block inline five-cylinder engine with a KKK-K27 turbocharger and Bosch electronic fuel injection, five-speed manual transmission, Quattro all-wheel drive, four-wheel independent coil-spring suspension with front and rear anti-roll bars, and four-wheel ventilated and slotted AP four-piston racing disc brakes with selective ABS. Wheelbase: 86.8 in.

  • Game-changing, all-wheel-drive rally machine
  • One of only 214 built for Group B homologation
  • Loaded with advanced technology and performance engineering
  • All original; believed two owners and 8,300 kilometers from new
  • Perhaps the finest example extant

“We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again; one day these cars are going to rival vintage Bugattis for desirability…They have an unimpeachable motorsport heritage.”
– Octane, March 2011

The introduction of Group B into the World Rally Championship in 1982 resulted from an evolution that was dictated by a general industry move from rear to front-wheel-drive cars, and it proved revolutionary, with seven victories. Contenders now had three classes from which to choose, Group N (standard production cars), Group A (modified production cars), and the almost immediately notorious and virtually unbridled Group B (modified sports cars).

Most notably, Group B allowed Audi to compete with its still-new Quattro all-wheel-drive system, which was an obvious boon on varied rally stage surfaces. The permanent all-wheel-drive system debuted in the Audi 80-based Quattro Coupe in 1980, and it quickly came to define the brand. Furthermore, FIA Group B homologation rules meant that only 200 road going examples of each car were necessary for sale to the public. These light regulations made for intensely competitive racing, since automakers were no longer required to build racing cars based on mass production models but vice-versa.

Audi campaigned what was essentially a Group 4 Quattro for the first couple of years, before engineers in Ingostadt, Germany, unleashed a wildly different model, which is now christened Sport Quattro. Although the Ur-Quattro (“original Quattro” to German enthusiasts) was a dominant force due to its permanent all-wheel-drive system, its heavy monocoque chassis, long wheelbase, and balance issues caused by its longitudinally mounted engine proved to be hindrances against such purpose-built racers as the Lancia 037.

Audi’s engineers were tasked with developing a new model that would address these concerns, and this was something they did in secret, far from the company’s road car operations. With its wheelbase shortened a meaningful 12.6 inches between the B- and C-pillars, the Sport Quattro was not only significantly shorter than the standard Quattro found in showrooms, but it’s steel monocoque shell, which was built off site by Baur, also featured numerous GRP and carbon-Kevlar panels to further trim weight. As such, there was very little shared with serial production Audis (although a more upright windshield that had been cribbed from the workaday Audi 80 alleviated early visibility concerns).

Under the hood, a downsized 2,133-cubic centimeter, five-cylinder alloy-block engine that featured four valves per cylinder was turbocharged to the tune of around 450 brake horsepower in competition tune. A massive KKK-K27 turbocharger rated at 17 psi (1.05 bar) meant that the car’s engine displacement actually required reduction in order to comply with FIA regulations. Even so, the Sport Quattro competed against cars in the 3,000-cubic centimeter category. It was capable of sprinting from a complete stop to 60 mph in just 4.8 seconds, making it one of the quickest cars ever built for road use when it debuted. AP four-piston racing brakes that had been ventilated and slotted, as developed for the Porsche 917, ensured that extraordinary stopping power was available when needed.

Even if one ignored those impressive numbers, the introduction of the Sport Quattro was still in many ways a watershed moment for rally racing. With the world’s top drivers on its roster, including the likes of Stig Blomqvist, Hannu Mikkola, Michèle Mouton, and Walter Röhrl, Audi Sport dominated the WRC throughout the 1984 season. The Sport Quattro’s last win came at the hands of Stig Blomqvist and Björn Cederberg, who raced one in early November 1984, at the Rallye Côte d’Ivoire in Africa, where the team also claimed the manufacturers’ title. This outright dominance cemented the car’s legendary stature in WRC rallying.

Audi built a mere 214 Sport Quattros, most of which were sold to select customers via specialized dealers. In Germany, the car ultimately retailed for more than 200,000 Deutschmarks, which was a substantial sum that bought owners more than a taste of competition-proven performance. The road going models boasted a more reasonable 302 brake horsepower and 258 foot-pounds of torque, but they were no less aggressive to drive than their racing counterparts. Advancements like a selectable ABS system allowed drivers to specifically tailor the vehicle to a variety of road conditions.

With their nine-inch-wide Ronal alloy wheels, the Sport Quattro had a light but darty demeanor that proved daunting for novice drivers, and as contemporary media reviews indicated, its turbo-lag was profuse but workable, making the car hardly forgiving to drive. The Sport Quattro commands as much respect for its hidden technology as it does for the drivers who piloted it to the checkered flag.

The road going 1984 Audi Sport Quattro offered here is without a doubt one of the finest examples extant, if not the finest. It was acquired by its current American-based caretaker from its first owner, noted Japanese collector Yoshikuni Okamoto, of Kobe. At this time, it currently has just 8,300 kilometers showing on its odometer, which are very much believed to be from new. Notably, Sport Quattros were not officially imported to the United States, making them even scarcer on these shores.

This car is swathed in white paint, which, according to the owner, is almost certainly original, over grey leather and cloth-covered Recaro sports seats, and it wears its factory-correct white alloy wheels. Furthermore, this Sport Quattro will be delivered to its next owner with its original tools, jack, owner’s/service manual, installed radio with manual, and its extra set of racing belts, which are still fresh. This Audi has been gently driven over the last 30-plus years and shows few, if any, signs of wear. The car was recently treated to a thorough service by one of Audi’s largest dealerships, Audi of Fairfield, Connecticut, which had never before had the opportunity to examine a Sport Quattro. Finally, this example carries a U.S. title and is currently legally registered for road use.

As interest continues to build in the saga that was Group B racing, the Sport Quattro has emerged as a genuine icon. So influential was the short, squat, purpose-built racer that Audi saw fit to pay homage to it by unveiling a modern take on the Sport Quattro as a concept car at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show, and this concept has been rumored to be slated for series production.

It is, therefore, our great pleasure to offer this superb Audi Sport Quattro at public auction for the first time ever.


Please note that the odometer was just discovered to be stuck during a recent service appointment at Audi Fairfield in Connecticut. A stripped plastic gear is identified by photographs. However, the dealership could not effect the repair in time for the auction and, as such, the consignor will credit the buyer with $1,000 at settlement. During this service the car was also fitted with a new set of tires. This title is in transit.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

Cameron Smyth

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Cameron Smyth joined RM Sotheby’s as a Car Specialist in 2015, working out of our corporate office and providing assistance on c... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Ian Kelleher

+1 212 894 1981
New York, United States

Ian Kelleher began his automotive career immediately following his graduation from Oberlin College with a Bachelor of Arts in Politica... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more