Subaru Impreza WRX STI RB320 (2007)
Jaguar XFR Stratstone Le Mans
Renault Clio RS Silverstone GP (2005-2006)
BMW M3 Edition (2009-2013)
Vauxhall Astra VXR Nürburgring (2008)
Racing improves the breed, so they say, and here are five limited edition fast cars that prove that point.
1. Subaru Impreza WRX STI RB320 (2007)
To commemorate the passing of British rally driver Richard Burns, who won the 2001 world championship in a Subaru Impreza, the Japanese car maker created the 316bhp WRX STI RB320.
It was fitted with £6000 worth of new parts but eventually sold at only £3500 more than a standard version. Enhancements included 18in alloys and Prodrive-developed suspension that consisted of a revised rear anti-roll bar, a sports spring kit and Bilstein dampers.
The Impreza was adorned with RB320 decals, gearknob and carpet mats, as well as a front lip spoiler and chrome mesh front grille.
You should expect to pay more than £12,000 for one.
2. Vauxhall Astra VXR Nürburgring (2008)
The Astra was the epitome of British-made, sensible motoring until the 237bhp VXR came along. It was, to say the least, lively, but someone at Vauxhall decided it wasn’t lively enough.
Hence the limited-run VXR Nürburgring, of which only 835 were made, to immortalise the car’s 8min 35sec lap time around the famous circuit. Tweaks included new, super-sticky Dunlop tyres, a raspy Remus exhaust system that had been developed by the company’s BTCC team to give the car an extra 15bhp, and wider tracks.
The changes worked; the car had a fluid ride and plenty of grip and traction.
To get a piece of Nürburgring action, be prepared to part with £9000.
3. Renault Clio RS Silverstone GP (2005-2006)
One glance through the Renault hatchback history is all it takes: the company has a rich heritage in hot hatches and clearly knows how to make the humdrum special.
It’s no different here, with this slightly more hardcore version of the 2006-2012 197bhp Clio RS, which Renault claimed was “made to grace Silverstone”.
To do so, the Clio sits on a lowered Cup chassis fitted with stiffer springs and dampers, plus 17in black alloy wheels and Renault Sport Recaro front seats. Search carefully and you’ll find decent examples available from £6800.
For those on a more modest budget, Renault built 50 Twingo versions, which can be had for around £4795.
4. BMW M3 Edition (2009-2013)
The BMW M3 was getting rave reviews, but fans were pining for a hardcore version in the vein of the previousgeneration M3 CSL. The M3 Edition was the answer.
Up front, the glorious naturally aspirated 420bhp 4.0-litre V8 engine remained, and was attached to a quickshifting seven-speed DCT gearbox.
In addition, the ride height was lowered by 10mm and each Edition model was fitted with 19in alloys. Race-inspired colours included Monte Carlo Blue, Dakar Yellow and Alpine White. Owners were also treated to a blacked-out grille, wing mirrors and exhaust.
To buy one of these Edition M3s, expect to pay at least £18,500.
The Stratstone Le Mans was a special-edition Jaguar saloon built to celebrate the company’s successes around the famous La Sarthe circuit.
It was based on the 503bhp 5.0-litre supercharged V8 Jaguar XFR, which had more than enough spice to entice anyone with unleaded in their veins.
Only 50 Stratstone Le Mans XFRs were made, available in Polaris White or Midnight Black, and Jaguar gave £5000 to the Royal British Legion from the sales of the limited-edition model.
To get your hands on this extremely exclusive model, you’ll need to shell out at least £22,000.