Rally Cars at the 2009 Amelia Concours – Photo Gallery

The 2009 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance featured more than 30 classes, including the Race Cars of 1963 to 1972.

In a class that included many incredible race cars, our highlighted cars – 1971 Porsche 911 STR and 1972 Datsun 240Z – stood out from the class (and Concours) as the only off-road rally cars.

While the Porsche and Datsun both incorporated reinforced suspensions and drivetrains, the manufacturers tend to differ in the details.

Porsche opted to include all of its lighting on the front hood, whereas Datsun goes even further with a spot light n the roof. Porsche chose to use whitewall Michelin tires supplied from sponsor Sears, while Datsun went the more traditional off-road route of beefy Bridgestone tires.

The dual mud flaps on the Porsche are ingenious. The FIA reportedly required intact mud flaps at each checkpoint, forcing teams to scramble to replace them once they fell off the car. However, once that happened on the 911, the team would simply release the second pair of mud flaps and be on their way, picking up valuable time.

Another interesting feature were the handles on the rear shoulders of the Porsche. These were installed to assist spectators in pushing or rocking the 911 when it became stuck in one of the sticky situations common to rallies.

The details go on and on…

2009 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance Rally Cars – Picture Gallery

1971 Porsche 911 STR – In 1971, the Porsche factory prepared five special rally competition cars for use in the East African Safari Rally. The East African Safari Rally was first held in 1953 as the East African Coronation Safari in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, as a celebration of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. In 1960 it was renamed the East African Safari Rally and kept that name until 1974, when it became the Safari Rally. The event was part of the World Rally Championship calendar for many years until being excluded due to lack of funding and organization in 2003.

The factory prepared 911s were equipped with a raised suspension, skid plates, special suspension reinforcements, light weight seats, roll bar, rally computers, Heuer stop watches, and a 2.3-liter twin-plug six-cylinder engine – Type 911/20 developing 240 hp.

All of the cars were originally painted white, but some were later painted green for the event. This particular example is the #33 Waldegaard car driven by Juergen Barth, who was in charge of the Safari effort. It has been restored to its original factory condition and specifications. Click here for a video of the 1971 East African Safari Rally. Our featured Porsche and its brothers make a brief appearance at minute 1:34. Interestingly, a Datsun 240Z driven by Edgar Herrmann and Hans Schuller took overall honors at the 1971 East African Safari Rally.


1972 BRE Datsun 240Z – This is the Datsun 240Z that Peter Brock and Lee Midgley ran in the 1973 Baja 500, and which later that year ran the Baja 1000. Brock Racing Enterprises (BRE) was contracted by Nissan Motors to develop and demonstrate the competition potential of Nissan’s line of Datsun vehicles as sold in the USA from 1968 through 1973. The road courses of the SCCA, the Trans-Am Series and the off-road courses of the Baja were the proving grounds.


Off-road racing was Peter Brock’s favorite form of automotive competition. BRE prepared a Datsun pickup for 1967, and then in 1968 through 1972 BRE raced Datsun 510s, and finally, this 240Z was built for the 1973 season.

This is the only 240Z that Peter Brock both built and drove. Delivered from the factory in September of 1972, this 240Z is similar to the Nissan factory works FIA Pro-Rally cars that ran the East African Safari Rally. Click here to read more about BRE’s Baja racing adventures.

[Source: Sports Car Digest]

Show Comments (24)

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  1. There seems to be a shortage of period correct rallye tires, at least bu judging the ones mounted on the green Porsche and the Datsun !

    1. Lorenzo – The guys that did the Porsche restoration said those are the period correct tires for that particular 911, although they look like the same tires as the Buick down the street…

      1. Yeah, Yeah ! Seventeen years by now I am in the USA and nothing surprises me any longer about the USA concourses and the famed USA restorers (my Ferrari is now 6.5 years in restoration at a multple Pebble beach winning shop on the east Coast, but the engine has been taken apart “per l’enesima volta” as we say in Italy. I have been told all will be OK in a month and a half from now …….. ! ).

        Most of the experts have never seen a car running properly, never driven one, do not know the relevance of certain cars and neither the history of automobiles. http://Www.velocetoday.com tries to educate people in these respects and is therefore a worth having a look at (see this weeks article on FIATs in the USA by a certain Mr. K. Ludvigsen.

        Anyway your articles are superb and I really enjoy your site !


    2. Hi Lorenzo:
      “shortage of period correct rally tires”…. is an understatement. In seven years of searching, I haven’t been able to find one – 225R75x14 Bridgestone Winter Tire with white wall from 1972/73. There has to be at least one out there somewhere – stuck in someone’s basement or attic…

      Nonetheless – the guys from Bridgestone’s Competition Tire Dept. {Mr. Iwamoto, Bridgestone’s liasion to NISMO} and Product Planning Group {Tadashi Kodama, Product Planning Manager} put a real effort into researching their archives for original tire spec.’s. They made every attempt to match as closely as possible a current consumer production tire to the original form and function. There seems to be a shortage of current production tires in 14 inch diameters today for any street performance application. I have to say that the guys at Bridgestone were enthusiastic supporters of the restoration project and followed the progress of the car start to finish. They were also both huge fan’s of BRE and Peter Brock.

      But I understand what your saying – I had no problem at all finding the “correct” XWX’s for my last 72 Ferrari. Ferrari parts are always valuable – and people tend to keep/horde the NOS spares they have for decades. That is NOT the case for most inexpensive DATSUN parts!! Nor is there much of a market for vintage Bridgestone Winter Tires from the 70’s.

      I hope you’ll forgive me for running a current production Bridgestone tire on the Z – but I have driven it about 1000 miles now at Freeway speeds {and perhaps a bit above that} and it was at the Amelia Event only for people to see and enjoy – it wasn’t actually entered for Concours Judging. I attempted to put it back in its “as race prepared” condition – few imperfections and all.

      Amelia and the hundreds of people there provided a very enjoyable weekend to say the least. The Charity they support is equally important to me as I grow older…

      kind regards,

      1. Carl –

        Thank you very much for the time and expense involved with putting a car on the field at Amelia. As we’re sure you know, your Datsun was a fan favorite throughout the day and 99% of them had no idea the Bridgestones weren’t correct.

        Thanks again for bringing it to Amelia and for keeping it on the road as well.



  2. This article doesn’t really compare like with like, does it? A full factory ‘Works’ Porsche ( sublime ) and a non-factory, non-‘Works’ 240Z built up from a standard road car by a race team operating thousands of miles away from the manufacturer. The East African Safari and the Baja events were also quite different, and cars built for one are hardly comparable with those built for the other. No disrespect to the BRE Baja 240Z ( also quite sublime , but it is a long way from a proper Nissan ‘Works’ 240Z rally car – which is what you really SHOULD be comparing the Works Porsche to.

    The article mentions the “ingenious” double mudflaps on the Porsche, and the handles on the rear quarters – both of which could also be seen on the Works 240Z that won the 1971 Safari Rally outright, beating the very Porsche you featured!

    How you can say that the BRE Baja 240Z is “similar to the Nissan factory works FIA Pro-Rally cars that ran the East African Safari Rally” is beyond me. They actually had almost nothing in common, and arguably the Works 240Z had more in common with the Works Porsche than it did the BRE car.

    It’s good to see the BRE car getting some recognition at Amelia, but it certainly is not any kind of representative of Nissan’s own Works cars, and presenting it as such misses the point of it completely.

    1. Alan – I suggest you re-read the article. They are simply showing you the two rally cars that were at Amelia this year.

      And how can they compare the Porsche to a “Works” 240Z when there wasn’t one at Amelia?

      1. Barry,
        I don’t need to re-read the article thanks. I already read it more than once before making my reply, and I stand by what I wrote.

        Both cars are interesting, but have almost nothing in common – apart that is from them both being lumped into the same category at Amelia.

        If you know something about Works 240Z rally cars, can you perhaps explain to me how this BRE car is “similar” to them? Of course the answer is that this car is NOT “similar” to a Works built 240Z rally car at all.

        And as for the lack of a proper Works 240Z at Amelia for comparison, I should think a locally-built non-Works Baja Porsche was also conspicuous by its absence – making another irrelevant comparison impossible.

        And Lorenzo I agree with you; the Porsche is wearing modern Michelins, which are nothing like the ‘SEARS’ tyres the car would have originally worn. But those SEARS tyres might be a little difficult to come by these days, so we might need to give the owner a little bit of slack in that respect.

  3. PS,

    The stickker on the Porshe says “Sears Radial Tires.” The tires mounted at the concourse are Michelin radials ! Wonder really what the Sears sonsor would have thought of that combination !

  4. Lorenzo. It is to bad you did not hook up with Motion Products,Inc in Wisconsin. You would be driving your car by now. They restore them and race them (ferrari). They have their own engine shop and do all the ferrari motors on site. They currently have one of the now priceless GTO’s in their shop now. Unless you are in no urgent need then you perhaps have chosen the right shop for you.

    Alan you are just too anal about everything in your life. As stated the BRE is only similar to….. period.

    1. There’s a delicious irony in being told I’m “too anal” in an exchange relating to the Amelia Island Concours….

      I don’t think you know anything about my “life” ( whatever you think that is ) and I don’t see what it has to do with the inaccuracies in this piece. If you knew anything about the true Works 240Zs then I’d expect you too to point out the LACK of similarity with the BRE car – so perhaps you don’t know, and probably don’t care anyway?

      Who actually wrote this article? Can anyone from Sports Car Digest comment on the misspelling of Edgar Herrmann and Hans Schuller’s names? Is it “too anal” to hope for the winners of the 1970 and 1971 East African Safari Rallies to have their names spelled correctly?

        1. No, the article has been edited since I pointed out the original misspelling. They were originally quoted as “Hermann” and Shuller” in the article.

          Will anyone from Sports Car Digest acknowledge that?

          1. Actually it’s “Hans Schüller”
            but other than that, I agree with Alan.
            And with Lorenzo about having fun at an European “Oldtimer Ralley”(there are many). Here cars are actually driven, briskly, sometimes for a week. However, Pebble Beach has its rightful place too. That’s the beauty of old cars. So many tastes – so many choices.

  5. sheesh – lighten up. theyre SIMILAR , not exact, not necessarily comparable. similar. theyre the only rally cars there. similar.

    sears radials WERE michelins – woulda thought they could have gotten some with ‘sears’ written on them though…whatever, both neat cars.

    1. John and all others,

      With reference to the Sears or Michelin Tires on the green Porsche:

      I want to state that I am not bothered by whatever is presently on the original (!) rims of the Porsche. I am “stupified” by the white walls, bad taste then, bad taste now. If it is original its fine with me, if it is not it is also fine with me !

      Furthermore I believe that a hell of a lot of the concourses organizers and participants spend way too much time and energy in presenting trailer queens that do not run the way they should run or have over-the- top detailed engine bays and interiors and exteriors (see Pebble Beach in particular) that have nothing to do with the original cars as they left the various factories.

      When in Europe I always enjoy the competition with classic cars on open roads or on closed tracks. Not the Zillionaire atmosphere of the USA, but much more enjoyable (and with much better food especially in Italy) than all that exclusivity crap here in the USA. Please note that this is only my opinion, I do not compel anybody to agree with me, and I absolutely do not want to offend anybody who thinks differently.

      1. When a car is over restored it gives the ‘Money people’ the I’ have it you don’t’ idea without the real hard work of drivng the car to victory. As aalways the ‘A’ type people push the limits by kyting the prices till the real enthusiast get rolled over frome price hype.

  6. Indeed, indeed ! My greatest joy is to drive a 1962 Lancia Flavia 1.5 saloon, ugly and not in “concours condition” but all original and very reliable. Then I love to see the faces of the various entrants in minor “concourses” when first palce is my 1971 FIAT 500 a daily driver both here in the USA and in Europe (in near perefect condition).

    I really do not like the “poodled” and “shampooed” Bizzarinis with race stickers and McGuyar super wax as seen at Pebble Beach and elsewhere (Sorry Dick/Chuck).

  7. There is a video of this ST Porsche at Daytona being driven in 2007 by
    it’s original (1971) driver, Bjorn Waldegard is at:
    http://www.gkrestorations.com along with the content
    of an article written about the car published in 911 & Porsche World. Choices about the tires are discussed and Waldegard describes
    what it was like to drive the car again after 36 years.

  8. There is a video of the car being driven at Daytona (Rennsport Reunion)in 2007 by Waldegard on the website:

    Also on the site is an article from 911 & Porsche World about the car – and discusses the tires and other restoration details.

    In the article Waldegard also talks about what it was like to drive the car after 36 years!

  9. Enjoyed toe pix, found much of the commentary churlish and snippy. I know pete brock was there and doubt he had any issues with the clone of his car.
    Geo G.

  10. Wow, what a commentary trail. After all that, they’re neat cars, and represent some great history. Lighten up folks, they’re fun cars to look at. Period.