Spotlight Shines On ‘Unbelievable’ MG Metro 6R4 In Motoring Film
Champion rally driver provides potted history of iconic MG Metro 6R4 during film
- MG Metro 6R4 is lead protagonist in film about a motorsport-mad family
- Former champion rally driver provides potted history of iconic car as he shows it off and drives it in feature
- ‘That V6 sound, it’s an orchestra’ says Ken Colbert, 70, the proud owner of rare car
- Son, Stephen, and grandson Max feature in Influx feature that focuses on Northern Irish collective
Spotlight shines on ‘unbelievable’ MG Metro 6R4 in motoring film
The iconic MG Metro 6R4 is the star turn in a special motorsport film about a family of motorsport enthusiasts.
Max, Stephen and Ken Colbert from Northern Ireland all feature in the film where the latter waxes lyrical about his prized asset. He provides a potted history of the vehicle from the highs of its World Rally Championship (WRC) days to the lows of it and fellow Group B cars being banned thanks to their involvement in fatal accidents, most notably Henri Toivonen in 1986.
With 200 Metros of its kind left and nowhere to use them, they were sold off to anyone who could afford to buy one. Eventually engines were taken back from 3-litre to 2.5L making them legal again at national level and the former champion rally driver in his homeland was one who benefitted.
“The performance is unbelievable. 11,000RPM with a 0-60 time of around three seconds. It’s not any quicker than your modern cars now, the WRCs are quicker again. But for an old non-turbo car, it’s a car you’ve got to be on top of,” said the 70-year-old who proudly shows off and drives his 6R4 in the film produced by online magazine Influx.
“It’s rear-engined, it’s four-wheel drive and everything is right behind your head. All six cylinders and it is loud. It’s a great thrill to drive that through a stage but you’ve got to be on top of it. You’ve got to be the driver. It can be driven sideways all day long but the heavy end is behind and it’ll soon get to the front; you’re spun and you’re off the road. There’s technique in driving it but it’s very rewarding to get it right.
“They’d appeal to everybody because the first thing in motorsport is the sound. The turbo cars didn’t have that. To be honest, when I was using those cars and competing against Escort Cosworths, Subarus, my car always stood out. If you watched a video of my car, you’ll hear it above everything else because of that high RPM. That V6 sound, it’s an orchestra. It’s a keeper and it will probably stay in this family as well.”
The former national rally champion has made a living as an engineer and passed on his expertise and his passion to his son Stephen, 44, a Formula 3 engineer. The pair have inspired grandson Max, 11, who is now starting out in karting.
“I thoroughly enjoy motorsport, both as an engineer and a competitor, and a spectator as well. I’m not a very good spectator because I always think ‘I could do that better’ when I’m watching. But it’s been my life and I’ve made a business from it,” Colbert senior added.