Veröffentlicht am: 13.01.2023 um 14:15 Uhr:

Technik Museum Speyer: Cars of the rally icon Walter Röhrl at Technik Museum Speyer

Special exhibition until 16 April 2023

  Walter Röhrl | Quelle: TMSP
Walter Röhrl at the Olympia Rallye '72 Revival on 11 August in Speyer. Source: TMSP

» Speyer. Walter Röhrl is one of the most outstanding rally drivers in international motorsport history. Ever since the beginning of his incomparable career at the 1972 Olympic Rally, Röhrl's name has been known to motorsport fans everywhere.

From 30 October 2022 until 16 April 2023, a dedicated area at Technik Museum Speyer will be hosting an exhibition of the cars driven by the rally legend. Special Exhibition: Walter Röhrl features fourteen cars driven by Röhrl during his career. Among them is the original Opel Ascona 400 that Röhrl drove to a world championship title at the Rallye Côte d'Ivoire in West Africa; a replica of the Ford Capri 2600 RS in which he entered the 1972 Olympia Rally and a replica of the Fiat 131 Abarth that sealed his win at the 1980 Monte Carlo Rally. The rally exhibition, which is included in the Technik Museum Speyer admission price, can be seen in the Raumfahrthalle during regular opening hours. More info at

Röhrl, a native of Regensburg, is still active on the rally scene and took part in the Olympia Rally Revival this summer. Wins and titles are part of his life. In Italy he has been voted Rally Driver of the Century, while an international jury of 100 motorsport experts named him Best Rally Driver of All Time". Curiously, Röhrl came to motorsport rather by chance, because according to his father he should have been a stonemason. At the age of 16, he entered service at the Episcopal office of Regensburg, as Secretary to the Director of Finance. After turning 18 and getting his driving licence, secretary Röhrl also became a chauffeur for the financial director, driving 120,000 km on Bavarian country roads for the Episcopal office. Walter Röhrl's skiing companion Herbert Marecek, with whom he often braved snowy roads through the forests of southern Germany to attend ski training, discovered the young Bavarian's extraordinary talent and encouraged him to participate in rallies. The 1968 Bavaria Rally marked the start of Röhrl's unparalleled career in rallying and by the end of 1970, he had driven several times for Alfa Romeo, BMW and Porsche. In December 1970, Ford and its partner Kleint Racing showed interest in working with Röhrl, opening the door to a professional career. In 1972 at the Olympia Rally in Kiel, Walter Röhrl and his co-driver Hannes Rothfuß took their places at the starting line in a Capri 2600 RS (HH-RD 950). Right from the special stage, the team proved it was part of the world's rallying elite at that time. Chief press officer Herbert Völker initially assumed a timekeeping error and downgraded Röhrl in the results lists. This happened several more times, until the race managers realised that there was a very special talent out on the road. With eleven fastest times, the hitherto unknown Röhrl shook up the elite drivers, finishing second in the overall classification. Unfortunately, just before the race ended the Capri's engine gave out. Even today it is still unclear how the fierce duel between Walter Röhrl and the leader Jean-Pierre Nicolas would have ended.

Between 1973 and 1987 , Walter Röhrl worked as a professional rally driver for Opel, Fiat, Porsche, Lancia and Audi, notching up fourteen World Rally Championship victories. His four victories at the Monte Carlo Rally between 1980 and 1984 with four different marques (Fiat, Opel, Lancia and Audi) were outstanding. Even though Walter Röhrl retired from professional rallying in 1992, his performances - and the cars he drove - are part of motor racing history.

About the Technik Museen Sinsheim Speyer – from Deep Sea into Space

Supported by the non-profit club Auto + Technik Museum e. V. and based on the motto “for fans from fans”, the Technik Museen Sinsheim Speyer have about 3,500 members worldwide. The financing is exclusively based on admission fees, donations as well as membership fees of club members. All surpluses are used for the museum’s maintenance and expansion. On an area of more than 200,000 sqm, the Technik Museen Sinsheim Speyer present more than 6,000 exhibits from all fields of technological history in a worldwide unique variety. The exhibits range from submarines to vintage cars, from the Concorde to the Space Shuttle BURAN. Besides the permanent exhibition and the changing special exhibitions, there are numerous vehicle and club meetings as well as events. Open 365 days a year, the museums attract over one million visitors a year. Our two IMAX large-format cinemas are a true highlight. While the IMAX 3D cinema in Sinsheim – “the cinema with the highest resolution in the world” – shows exclusive documentations and the latest Hollywood blockbusters, films are projected onto a giant dome in the IMAX DOME cinema in Speyer. «

  Rallye Elfenbeinküste Westafrika 1982 | Foto: Reinhard Klein
Walter Röhrl at the Rallye Côte d'Ivoire in West Africa, 1982. Image rights: Reinhard Klein

Source: Press release of the Technik Museum Speyer from 28 September 2022

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