require insane car
modifications in order
to win, but there
are a handful of
upgrades you might
want to consider
before hitting the dirt.
shocks and springs, make sure
they’re intended for dirt or snow.
It’s also notable that your car
doesn’t need three feet of ground
clearance. Many SCCA Regions see
stock height Miatas, MR2s, and other
low-slung sports cars that compete
without constantly denting oil pans.
While a little extra height via spring or
tires will offer a margin of safety, most
cars are fine at the stock ride height.
Tire selection is a topic unto itself
so we won’t go there today, but we will
discuss wheel selection. While virtually
any car can compete in RallyCross,
it’s a sport that can be rough on cars,
and your wheels will take the brunt of
the load. To that end, it turns out that
the car’s original wheels are actually a
great choice for competition. Factory
original wheels may be heavier than
their aftermarket counterparts, but
they offer intense durability, which is
ideal for what you’ll be putting them
through. But contrary to what you
might imagine, factory steel wheels
may bend easier than stock aluminum
ones. Now, if you can afford rally-
specific wheels, those are also ideal.
On to powertrain modifications, your
best investment is going to be in some
type of limited slip differential. Many will
say a clutch type LSD is best for loose
surfaces, but helical gear differentials
have also proven to be effective. Even
welded diffs work great on dirt, they
just require a unique driving style.
While RallyCross speeds are not
great, brakes should not be overlooked.
It’s important that you choose a pad
compound that’s easy to modulate
and is not overly aggressive. Street
pads like the Hawk HPS are a popular
choice, offering great modulation
while not being quick to lock the tires.
With a car ready to RallyCross, soon
it will be time to discover the secrets
to speed. Luckily, those come easy as
the RallyCross community is one of
the most generous in motorsports.
To that end, don’t be afraid to ask
competitors for advice – you’ll certainly
learn a thing or two, and you’ll
undoubtedly make a new friend.