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Replicas are very like replicants in that they both cause some serious existential quandries. Namely, how much does authenticity really matter? Movies like Blade Runner confront this question and effectively answers it by suggesting that authenticity takes a back seat to narrative and fear of death when it comes to value.
That being the case, this replica Audi Quattro S1 E2 is as good as it gets.
Volker Gehrt’s story starts as so many others do: with a toy car. A gift from his wife, Gehrt kept a model of the Group B beast on his desk, playing with it occasionally, idly dreaming of a day when he could drive one.
And that’s when Roland Gumpert entered his life. When they first met, Gehrt had no idea about Gumpert’s role in the creation of the car, but the two became fast friends.
As time went on Gehrt developed a plan to build a replica for himself and to his surprise, Gumpert loved the idea. Not only that, but the former Audi man suggested that they rebuild the lost San Remo car from 1985.
The car was driven to victory by rally legend Walter Rohrl at that race and it seems that as a result, he took an interest in Gehrt’s project. The driver stopped by the garage to take a look at the car and, as Gehrt tells it, got goosebumps because of how faithful it was to the source material. Before leaving, Rohrl signed the car.
While, of course, this replica isn’t as important as the lost Quattro it seeks to emulate (if it ever popped back up on the market) it’s hard to say that this replica is valueless. Partly that’s because of what Gehrt chose to emulate (we all want a Quattro), but also because of how good his story is.
With its ties to the men who built and raced it, the loss of this car would be felt almost as dearly as the loss of a real Quattro S1 (unlike a Fierorari). Like Roy Batty, this Quattro has seen things you people wouldn’t believe. And if Ghert crashed it all of those moments would be lost in time, like tears in rain.