1968 was the year that Ford took a leap forward with the launch of Britain’s own pony car, the Ford Capri. With its Mustang-inspired appearance and modern interior, it was an instant success with sales in excess of 200,000 in its first year.
Ford’s fastest ever production line continued to impress through the seventies. Prices were low enough to make the model affordable; 1300 models received fake rear air intakes so every car looked the part. In 1973 the 3000 GXL was a facelift on the Mark 1 model, with improved power at 136 bhp and more chrome than you could shake a stick at.
If you’re looking to buy a Mk I Capri then bring a magnet with you as rust is a serious problem for all old Fords and badly repaired restorations can hide the inevitable. Corrosion can be severe around headlamps as well as around the trailing edge of both front wings. Sills need scrutinising – press gently, any give will mean the area is rotten internally.
Other key areas to look out for are the front valance, A posts, windscreen pillars, door bottoms, rear arches and front wings. Make sure all these body panels are sound as replacements are hard to find.
The Essex V6 is the engine of choice under the bonnet, but look out for blown head gaskets and cracked cylinder heads as both are common faults. Make sure the engine has had regular oil changes and a good service history by checking the documentation, and, as the V6 has a tendency to overheat, make sure the radiator isn’t blocked with silt.
The Capri boasts a strong gearbox and is good for 100,000 miles. Check this by accelerating hard in each gear, if it jumps out the gearbox its had it. Suspension is pretty straight forward with Macpherson struts that are reliable, but check for leaks. The rear is leaf sprung and can sag; shocks may also leak so check for this too.
Interiors are like gold dust so any problems inside may need a decent trimmer. Make sure switch gear is all present and correct as replacements are also hard to find.
1968 - 1973
0-60 mph 9.2 sec / Top Speed 114 mph
Power & Torque
128 bhp / 173 lb ft
2994 cc V6 /12 valves
front engine / RWD
Four speed manual
The last Mk1 Capri was actually produced eight months after the launch of the Capri II on October 31, 1974.
Mark Wilkinson, Managing Director Says:
“The Ford Capri was perfect for the seventies with its American influence, any red blooded male from Britain would have loved to own one. After all, what other car goes so well with a pair of flared trousers.”
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MORE VITAL STATS
August 15th, 2016
Volkswagen Beetle (1957-1967)
The Volkswagen Beetle was produced over seven decades from 1946 until 2004 no other car had been made for so long and remained so similar in looks than this German icon. Its purpose initially was to get Nazi Germany mobile but after the war the British army took control and the car was sold across the world as a practical and economical run around.
This basic car was constantly being improved and updated moving very nicely with the times but also sticking to its air cooled routes much like its Porsche cousin it really was a case of if it’s not broke, don’t fix it.
Despite the original popularity producing so many Renault Dauphines these days they are a very rare car, especially the Gordini. Finding a good one will probably be a mission and you’ll be paying top dollar due to its rarity. Here’s what to look out for.
The VW Golf GTI is one of the most iconic and influential automobiles that Volkswagen has ever produced. The Volkswagen Golf GTI brought a bit of everything to the table, a practical hatchback, economical with pace and handling at an affordable price, what’s not to love. The buying public agreed as the GTI sold well and it didn’t take long for other car makers to catch on such as Ford’s XR2, Peugeot’s 205 GTI and Vauxhall’s Astra GTE to name but a few started to come out of the woodwork.
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