Silverstone Classic Race Car Sale 2016

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1964 Ford Lotus Cortina FIA/HTP Appx K

Lot No.: 104

Registration: Not Specified
Chassis Number: Not Specified
Engine Number: Not Specified
Year of Manufacture: 1964
Sold for (£): 73,130

The Lotus Cortina came into being because of Ford's decision to step up their motorsport involvement in the early 1960s. Ford's Walter Hayes spoke to Colin Chapman, asking him to come up with a competitive saloon, using the Cortina as a base, that could be produced in sufficient numbers to satisfy the mandatory 'Group 2' homologation requirements, and with which the Blue Oval could beat all comers. The solution was to take Ford's bullet-proof 1500 Kent engine, fit it with a twin-cam cylinder head, pop it into a stiffened Cortina shell, sort out the suspension and brakes and paint a green stripe down the side. The cars would be built by Lotus at its plant in Cheshunt, and marketed as the Ford Cortina Lotus. Once fully developed, Lotus-Cortinas absolutely shone on track driven by household names including Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart, Graham Hill, Jackie Ickx, Roger Clark and many, many more. Unlike many others racing today, this car has genuine period racing history and throughout its 52 years has benefited from constant development.

The complete history of this competitive FIA Lotus Cortina is recorded from 21-2-1964 when it was first registered in Vercelli, Italy, to racer Giancarlo 'Mici' Giordano. The Lotus was sold in 1967 to its second owner, Sergio Piana, who was also a capable racer, as was its third, Mario Fren, who acquired the car in 1968 and was to keep it for a further twenty-two years.

From 2000 to 2011 the car was owned by a fastidious BRDC member who was responsible for its maintenance and preparation, and his intelligent development resulted in the car becoming a recognised front-runner and race winner during his ownership. This level of competitiveness was particularly well respected as it was not achieved at the expense of originality. Since 2011, this car has been raced only a handful of times by our vendor, who is also a highly experienced racer, and most notably during his ownership this car was leading for a large proportion of the Silverstone Classic U2TC race in 2013. 

The car is currently fitted with an engine built by the well-respected John Smurthwaite, and we are informed this unit has had only two hours running since new. Our vendor has also added under his ownership a DC electronics supplied, lightweight competition electric power steering (motor/gearbox, ecu, wiring loom) which was bought at a price of £9,000 not long ago. This equipment is a bolted on to the steering column and can easily be removed.

What's also fantastic about this car is that our vendor has gone to great lengths to create the sort of all round package needed to go racing effectively. Generously included with the car, are a zero-hours John Smurthwaite spare engine (normal retail £24K), a spare gearbox built with new internals (£7,500) and a pair of differentials (£3,500 each). Two new sets of Magnesium wheels (at a cost of £1,000 each) and a number of smaller spares enhance this historic racing package, and at a guide price of £70-£80k for the lot, is an opportunity not to be missed. 

This is a fabulous and rare example of an FIA Lotus Cortina with enviable provenance and decades of period history. The car is eligible for a variety of Touring Car Series throughout Europe, including the U2TC and Masters, and considering the content of the overall package with the spare units, represents remarkable value for money.