Published on: Jan 18, 2016 @ 23:38 Originally Published in: 2015 (old website) (C) Jay Auger - website owner & author Notice: Any form of duplication methods (including but not limited to copy/paste of text and screen capture) of the website's content is strictly forbidden.
This rear-wheel drive rally car is based on the Russian VAZ-2105 Lada Riva model, also known as a “communist replica” of the FIAT 124, and built by VFTS (Vilniusskaja Fabrika Transportnyh Sredstv), which was founded and then managed by famous Lithuanian rally driver Stasys Brundza. All of VFTS’ rally cars were reputed to be simple, rugged, easy to repair and allowed for decent performance at an affordable price.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- RALLY CAR SPECIFICATIONS
- HOMOLOGATION VERSION
- HOMOLOGATION PAPERS (B-222)
- ROAD CAR SPECIFICATIONS
Production of the 2105 started in 1979 at the Vilnius auto plant in Lithuania. It was later chosen by the VFTS firm to replace their first rally car, the Lada 1600 (VAZ-2106), as the their flagship model. Having produced the required units, it achieved Group B homologation in October of 1982 under the moniker “VFTS-2”, which simply meant that it was the second rally model to come out of the company, but it is most widely known to enthusiasts as the 2105 VFTS.
The 2105 VFTS rally car made use of the same 1568 cc engine that was developed for the firm’s first rally vehicle, the Lada 1600. The naturally aspirated unit could more than double its factory output to a healthy 160 BHP thanks to the use of double WEBER 45 DCOE carburettors, modified internals components and 100-octane racing fuel. The small engine displacement would efficiently put the car in the B/10 class for engines between 1300 and 1600 cc where it was more than a match for any similar competition.
Improvements were made available over the course of its limited production run, such as a reinforced rear axle housing in 1985 and a new 5-speed transmission in 1986. The interesting particularity of this gearbox was the shifting pattern, with its first gear in the far right corner above reverse, while second through fourth gears occupied the normal pattern of a 4-speed unit. This layout was perfect for rallying since first gear is hardly ever selected other than for launches and allowed the most frequently used gears, second and third, to be lined-up with each other rather than crossed. Other improvements included the availability of lighter aluminium inner door panels, hood/bonnet (with an added inlet duct), rear trunk/boot and polycarbonate side screens.
The Lada 2105 VFTS competed in but a rare few World Rally Championship (WRC) outings in the Group B era, such as Finland’s 1000 Lakes Rally where it utterly dominated the B/10 class in 1986 by occupying the first 6 class positions. Russian rally driver Igor Bolshikh would finish 18th overall and 1st in the B/10 class. However, the car was more competitive in Eastern Europe’s national events where it led most of the events it participated in – clinching an extensive list of wins and podium finishes.
Production of the 2105 VFTS officially ended in 1990 with a total of 30 units built and sold around the world. The car was not affected by the 1986 infamous Group B ban since it competed in the B/10 class and continued to be widely used in FIA-sanctioned rallies until the expiration of its homologation at the end of 1991.
The car had by then gained so much notoriety among rally enthusiasts of the old communist bloc that many privateers started to copy them and it soon became available as a kit car. Replicas of the VFTS-2 are a mainstay of many rally series in Eastern Europe to this day, where it still favorably competes, also being much welcomed in historical outings across the globe.
It is note to mention that VFTS also worked on the “Lada Turbo” Group B Prototype, better known as the Lada Samara EVA (click to learn more).
RALLY CAR SPECIFICATIONS
|Group/Class||B/10||Homologation number: B-222 (click to see papers)|
|Years Active||1982~1991 (FIA)||Homologation
|Type||I-4, SOHC 8v, gas||front, longitudinal|
|Displacement||1568 cc||WRC = 1568 cc|
|Output Power – Torque||160 HP @ 7000~7500 rpm||122~134 lb-ft (165~182 Nm) @ 5500~6000 rpm|
|Materials||block: cast iron||cylinder head: aluminum|
|Lubrication System||wet sump with 1 oil pump|
|Differential Ratios||3.53 or 3.06||2.37|
|Clutch||single disc – dry|
|Front Suspension||independent, struts, coil springs|
|Rear Suspension||reinforced straight axle, struts, coil springs, radius rods|
|Steering System||worm roller gear||16.4:1|
||dual circuit with servo, adjustable ratio|
|length: 4090 mm (161.0 in)||width: 1725 mm (67.9 in)||height: 1400 mm (55.1 in)|
|wheelbase: 2424 mm (95.4 in)||front track: 1365 mm (53.7 in)||rear track: 1321 mm (52.0 in)|
|Rims – Tires||
|Dry/Unladen Weight||920~950 kg (2028~2094 lb)|
|Weight/Power||5.1~5.9 kg/HP (11.3~13.1 lb/HP)|
HOMOLOGATION / PRODUCTION VERSION
VAZ: Volzhsky Avtomobilny Zavod (now AvtoVAZ), is better known as Lada. The 2105, also known as the “Zhiguli” or Lada Riva in certain markets, was based on the FIAT 124 platform. Introduced in 1979, the production of the model incredibly lasted until 2010. While it was obviously conceived as an economy car without any performance aspirations, the 2105 is still very popular among Russian and Eastern Europe’s automobile enthusiasts who relish in the model’s vast motorsports history.
The VAZ-2105’s mass production far exceeded the 200 homologation units required by the Group B regulations. In such instances, the FISA/FIA demanded a limited series of a minimum of twenty “evolution” units – cars equipped with the all of the various VO (Variant Option) performance parts aimed at racing. The VFTS firm satisfied these conditions by producing an initial batch of 20 homologation rally cars.
Official Group B homologation was therefore granted on October 1st of 1982 (# B-222 / click to see papers) under the moniker “VFTS-2”, simply named for being the second rally model offered and homologated by VFTS.
The VFTS company would build an extra 10 rally cars per the customer requests it received until production was officially terminated in 1990. The 2105 VFTS-2 has since widely been copied by rally enthusiasts all over the world, with various kit cars being commercially available, keeping the soul of this favourable competitor very much alive.
ROAD CAR SPECIFICATIONS
There are too many different specifications for the normal production Lada Riva VAZ-2105 model to list. However, some are available by CLICKING HERE!
(C) Article by Jay Auger – website owner, main author and chief editor