Ford Capri

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Ford Capri

The Capri is remembered for the classic advertising slogan ‘The car you always promised yourself’. The first real Ford Capri was introduced in January 1969 at the Brussels Motor Show, with sales starting the following month. The intention was to reproduce the success of the North American Ford Mustang in Europe, to produce a European pony car. It was mechanically based on the Cortina and built in Europe at the Dagenham and Halewood plants in the UK, the Genk plant in Belgium, and the Saarlouis and Cologne plants in Germany.

The car was named Colt during development stage, but Ford were unable to use the name, as it was trademarked by Mitsubishi. Although a fastback coupe, Ford wanted the Capri MKI to be affordable for a large spectrum of potential buyers. In order to do that, it was available in a variety of engines. The British and German factories produced different line-ups. The continental model used the Ford Taunus V4 engine in 1.3, 1.5 and 1.7 liter displacement, while the British versions were powered by the Ford Kent straight-4 in 1.3 and 1.6 liter form. The Cologne V6 2.0 L served as initial range-topper. Until the end of the year, new sports versions were added: the 2300 GT in Germany, using a double-barrel carburetor and 125hp (92 kW), and the 3000 GT in the UK, with the Essex V6, capable of 138 hp (103 kW).

In April 1970, Ford began selling the Capri outside Europe, in the North-American, South African and Australian markets. These versions were powered solely by the underpowered Kent 1.6 engine, but a Pinto straight 4 cylinder 2.0lt replaced it in 1971. The American version featured new headlights and bumpers, and carried no brand badge. A new 2637 cc version of the Cologne V6 appeared in September 1971, powering the Capri RS2600. This model used Kügelfischer fuel injection to raise power to 150 hp (110 kW), and was the basis for the Group 2 RS2600 used in the European Touring Car Championship.

The RS2600 also received modified suspensions, a close ratio gearbox, lightened bodywork panels, ventilated disc brakes and aluminum wheels. The 2.6 L engine was detuned in September for the deluxe version 2600 GT, with 2550 cc and a double-barrel Solex carburetor. The Ford Capri was first introduced into Australia in May, 1969 and was initially available only as a 1600 Deluxe or a 1600 GT. In February, 1970, the 1600 GT was replaced by the more powerful V6 3000GT, although a 1600 XL model was introduced to fill the void left by the 1600 GT's demise. The four cylinder Capri's sold extremely well, (over 12,000 units were sold in less than four years), with more than a third of these being sold within the first year.

Ford Capri  

Ford Capri Mk.I

1969 - 1972
The Ford Capri was first introduced into Australia in May, 1969 and was initially available only as a 1600 Deluxe or a 1600 GT. In February, 1970, the 1600 GT was replaced by the more powerful V6 3000GT, although a 1600 XL model was introduced to fill the void left by the 1600 GTs demise. More >>
Ford Capri  

Ford Capri GT 1600

1969 - 1970
Capri 1600 GT - "The car that reshapes your life" was how the official Ford brochure described the Capri! slip behind the wheel and something happens. The world suddenly looks a little better to you. And you relax back in your snug bucket seat knowing that your Capri makes you look a little better to the world, too. More >>
Ford Capri  

Ford Capri GT V6 3000

1970 - 1972
The Capri 3000GT was released into Australia in 25th February, 1970, and then only as a 4-speed manual. Although a little pricey, it was an immediate success, selling 1,502 units to the end of 1970. The 3-speed Borg Warner 35 automatic version was released later in the year and sold some 167 units before years end. More >>
Ford Capri  

Ford Capri Perana

1970 - 1973
The name ‘Perana’ coined by Basil Green Motors, of Johannesburg for its engine transplant conversions on popular Ford models has come to be synonymous with “performance", both on road and track. More >>
Ford Capri  

Ford Capri RS2600

1970 - 1974
The one millionth Ford Capri was an RS2600, and was built in August 1973. This Capri was never officially sold in the UK, although a few have now been imported. More >>
Ford Capri  

Ford Capri RS3100

1973 - 1974
In November 1973, at Ford's Halewood plant in the UK, production of the RS3100 began. Production of the RS3100 actually overlapped with the Capri MKII and was intermittent at best. More >>
Ford Capri  

Ford Capri MKII

1974 - 1978
In February 1974, the Capri Mk2 was introduced. After 1.2 million cars sold, and with the 1973 oil crisis, Ford chose to make the new car more suited to everyday driving, with a shorter bonnet, larger cabin and the adoption of a hatchback rear door. More >>
Ford Capri MkII Ghia  

Ford Capri MKII Ghia 3 Litre V6

1974 - 1978
Today there is a growing allegiance of Capri aficionados, and one of the most keenly sought is the Capri Ghia V6 3 Litre. At launch the Capri II 3000 GT was considered to be one of the best value-for-money performance cars on the market, although the replacement of the "GXL" and "E" iterations with the Ghia moniker did not present quite the value you would have expected. More >>
Ford Capri

Ford Capri MKIII

1978 - 1986
The Capri MKIII, officially referred to as "Project Carla", was little more than an update of the MKII. Production began in April 1977 with the first cars being available in March 1978, but failed to halt a terminal decline in sales. However, this model was used in the TV series The Professionals, which was credited with keeping interest in the car in the UK. More >>
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