44 CMN is the actual car, the Audi UK car, that Blomqvist drove to victory on the 1983 RAC, his first win that year and his first in a GpB.
The original long-wheelbase Audi Quattro was homologated in Gp4 on the first day of 1981 in time for the Monte Carlo. It had a capacity of 2144cc which, when multiplied by the 1.4 turbo coefficient meant that it was considered to be 3001cc. This meant its minimum weight was 1005kg. This did not matter to start with as the car was heavier than that, but when it had to be transferred into GpB for January ’83, the opportunity was taken to homologate an alloy block. This variant was known as the A1 (A for alloy). But it was now worse off since that extra cc meant its new minimum weight was 1100kg. So when it came to the A2, a new homologation for Corsica on May 1, its capacity was corrected to 2109cc: an equivalence of 2952cc, and a new minimum of 960kg. Audi never got down to that with a fully equipped rally car, but it certainly dipped below the magic tonne.
The twin air scoops in front of the rear wheels most easily distinguish the A2 externally. Internally, the adoption of Bosch Motronic in the place of Pierburg gave a useful increase in power at lower revs.
It was by far the most successful GpB Quattro, winning 10 WRC events and taking the manufacturers’ title in 1984 and drivers’ titles in ’83-84 via Mikkola and Blomqvist.
Blomqvist’s view: Ah! My favourite Audi, the A2 with the long wheelbase. I don’t know why, because the A1 was almost the same, but for some reason it was the one I liked most. On those fast rallies like Sweden,1000 Lakes and Argentina, it was more stable, easier to handle. And more comfortable as well! The A2 on the RAC was a great car. You know, it’s always slippery at RAC-time. and the Audi made it so much easier: you didn’t lose traction so easily and you could have a go without such big risk. It was day and night when you compared it to other cars. Even the braking, with the four wheels joined together, was less of a problem, less likely to lock up.
But it was always a bit of an understeery machine, with the engine hung out over the front wheels. But I was used to that from Saab – the left-foot braking came in useful to control it.