|Website created by XR4Ti enthusiast Peter Cipolla of Kansas City, Missouri to highlight Merkur XR4Ti race cars of the mid 1980's. The Merkur XR4Ti is a European Ford, based on the successful Sierra model, that was sold in the United States from 1985-89 through select Lincoln-Mercury-Merkur dealers. They were equipped with the Ford SVO 2.3L turbocharged motor, rear wheel drive, and independent rear suspension.
Racing was planned to be part of the marketing strategy long before the first 'production car for sale' actually arrived in January of 1985. In November of 1983 Ford sent a 'Request for Quote' to Kent Racing of Hawthorne, CA to "Design, build, and test 1 Mercury Merkur XR4Ti for competition in the 1984/85 IMSA GTU series". Ford issued a purchase order to Kent Racing and construction of the Merkur GTU (Grand Touring Under 2 liter) car began in February of 1984. The car was then raced in the IMSA GTU class from February '85 thru the '88 seasons.
My hobby has been driving at open-track road course events since about 1982, primarily at Shelby/Ford club events around the country. Originally with my '65 Mustang Fastback and now with my XR4Ti racecars.
In 1997 I purchased the 1985 XR4Ti IMSA IS (International Sedan division) car that was built and campaigned by Bill Topping in the 1988 thru 1991 IMSA seasons.
In 2006 I purchased the 1985 XR4Ti IMSA GTU (Grand Touring Under 2 liter) car you see in the background.
The Roush XR4Ti's of Trans-Am and IMSA GTO (Grand Touring Over 2 liter) fame will be highlighted on this website as well.
I'm always interested in additional photos or information on these cars. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
|Merkur XR4Ti IMSA IS page|
|Merkur XR4Ti IMSA GTU page|
|Merkur XR4Ti Trans-Am / IMSA GTO page|
|Background is a scanned image of an original 'autograph card' handed out at race events in 1985, courtesy of the Joe Paullus Collection.|
|Some of my favorite links:|
|Official Merkur Club website|
|Great Forum on Merkur (mare-coor) XR4Ti and Scorpio models.|
|Large database of racing photos, including many of these XR4Ti's in action.|
|Mark Windecker's Photo Galleries|
|Dan Wildhirt's Photo Galleries||Great photos of IMSA cars in action, including this Merkur GTU!|
|Racing Sports Cars Galleries||Huge racing photo archive.|
|North American Motorsports||All info on all tracks. Want to see the evolution of Watkins Glen?|
|Peter Denbigh's 85XR site|
|Very sharp young man that's built his XR4Ti road race car himself. Nice site.|