Lot 261 - 1963 Ford Cortina Mk. I 1500 GT
|Odometer reading||80,793 miles|
|Estimate||£26,000 - £32,000|
- Earliest known surviving Mk.1 Cortina GT
- Subject to stunning documented restoration
- Rare steering column mounted rev counter
- Show winning example with four documented former keepers
The Cortina was Ford's mass-market compact car and sold extremely well. It was produced in five generations, the Mk. I through to the Mk. V although officially the last one was called the Cortina 80. With variants of the Cortina reaching sales of over one million, each successive model proved more popular than its predecessor. Such was its fame in the UK, that the BBC Two documentary series Arena once devoted an entire programme to the car and its enthusiasts. In response to the huge success of the Mini, Ford responded not with a small car but with a larger family offering which they could sell in large numbers. The result was the Cortina; a distinctively styled car aimed at buyers of the Morris Oxford and Vauxhall Victor, launched on 20th September 1962. With eye-catching modern styling, it was originally branded as the Consul Cortina until a modest facelift in 1964, after which, it was sold simply as the Cortina but with four trim levels; Standard, Deluxe, Super and GT.
This stunning example presented in Goodwood Green over Sierra Beige trim and Beechwood Brown carpets was built on 8th April 1963 before being registered to its first owner, Mr. Randall of Nuneaton on 16th April 1963. Having just four previous owners from new, this example first changed hands in 1998 to a Mr. Bradley, also of Nuneaton, who owned the car a further ten years before it transferred to Nigel Bradley, possibly a relative, who owned the car for just a year before Mr. Jones of Coventry purchased it on 4th August 2011. While in Mr. Jones ownership a comprehensive ground up restoration was undertaken, this was completed in early 2014 and included an engine rebuild with uprated Lotus con-rods and pistons. A staggering photographic record of this restoration is present in the history file. The car is otherwise believed to be totally standard and was completed in time to be shown at the Practical Classic’s Restoration show in April of that year. Presented, as it did when it finished its restoration, this rare early example, with the rev counter mounted to the steering column, is believed to not only be the earliest known surviving four door saloon Cortina GT but the earliest know Mk.1 GT in the world with details found in the history file from the Cortina GT Owners Club. Also found in the history file is the photographic restoration, previous MoT test certificates and early tax discs including the first from 1963 still affixed to the car. A DVLA list of keepers provides the provenance of ownership. This example is as stunning as it is rare, having attended and impressed at many local shows our vendor is forced to sell due to change in circumstances, hence the opportunity to offer this car which would usually be passed through the ownership of only a very few lucky enthusiasts. Viewing is highly recommended as sourcing such a car and then restoring to this condition would surely cost way in excess of the estimate.
Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Accordingly, buyers are on notice that each vehicle is offered ‘as is/as seen’ subject to the Terms and Conditions for the auction. Buyers are advised to inspect the vehicle in person or use a professional to carry out this service. Historics will not entertain disputes over descriptions.