Lot 144 - 1966 Ford Lotus Cortina Mk. I
|Odometer reading||87,351 miles|
|Estimate||£36,000 - £41,000|
|Result||Sold - £44,240|
In 1961, Colin Chapman was commissioned by Harry Mundy to design a twin-cam version of the Ford Kent engine and its first appearance was at the Nürburgring in a Lotus 23 driven by Jim Clark. Soon after, the engine appeared in the Lotus Elan. During the engine's development, Walter Hayes at Ford asked Colin Chapman to fit the twin cam into 1,000 Ford saloons for Group 2 racing homologation. Chapman accepted the contract and the type 28, or Lotus Cortina as it became known, was born. Whilst Ford supplied the two-door body shells and took care of the marketing, Lotus engineered the mechanical and cosmetic changes which included the 1,558cc engine along with the Elan's close-ratio gearbox, front quarter bumpers and Lotus badges. They also made changes to the interior with a new centre console to accommodate the revised gear lever position, different seats and a later styled dashboard that incorporated a tachometer, odometer, oil pressure, water temperature and fuel gauges. A wood rimmed steering wheel was the finishing touch.
This Lotus Cortina Mk. I had the mechanics fully re-commissioned in 2014 after being in dry storage for nine years. It was purchased by the previous vendor about 19 years ago from a fund management company who had the car professionally restored in the early 1980's and then put into storage as an investment. The current owner purchased the car about three years ago and since has refurbished the wheels and the engine bay with attention being paid to the mechanics. Finished in the classic Lotus Cortina colours of white with green strip and black interior, this Mk. I is supplied with a V5C registration document, a letter from the Lotus Cortina Register confirming the provenance and value, a list of all the previous owners, with the first being a captain in the British army, a letter from a previous owner with some photographs from the early 1980's and some old MoT test certificates. The Lotus Cortina, quite rightly, earned an awesome reputation in its day and these models are now highly prized; this is an opportunity to acquire an iconic piece of motoring competition history in superb condition throughout.