The Ford brand was always about making car ownership easy and affordable and bringing performance to the people. The Mk2 1600 Sport did exactly that! This particular car a South African export car and many other Mk2 Escorts were all built in Halewood Factory Liverpool, shipped as shells (the advantage of a tax break offered by the South African government to cars at least partly built there) to the Ford plant in Silverton, Pretoria for final assembly. The “Sport” shells destined for Silverton actually received many of the strengthening goodies otherwise reserved for home market RS models, so a South African Escort Sport is a somewhat superior beast.
The 1600S was only distinguishable by its new front halogen spot lamps, the extra pin stripes and the sport badges on the back. On an even better note, the 1600S shared parts from both the Mexico and the RS2000, these cars are very sought after today.
From the photographs, the car has undergone a full nut and bolt restoration in South Africa before being recently shipped back to the UK. An original right-hand drive car retaining its original colour and all parts and features intact.
It is still wearing its very distinctive livery and looks suitably purposeful sitting on factory-fit wider steel wheels (again, like that much missed RS 2000). The black trim items, quarter bumpers and auxiliary lights add to the purposeful ‘no frills’ effect and are complimented by the period ‘1600 Sport’ stickers. The sharp lines of the MK2 Escort accentuates the ultra slim screen and door pillars which, along with the low waistline which make for an exceptionally light and airy cabin. The simple, uncluttered theme is continued through to the interior with a clean, simple dash refreshingly free from the myriad switches and dials did not distract the driver of a modern-day sports saloon.
The all-important, Sport specification ‘711M’ 1599cc Kent block is in place displaying its apparently original factory blue paint and chrome rocker cover. The engine bay is just as clean inside than outside but correct with all the chassis / vin plate.
What immediately hits you about the interior is the non-genuine wooden steering wheel, which will be replaced with the correct ‘RS’ type three spoke steering wheel. The interior is very presentable and period with its brown vinyl doorcards, The Herring bone fabric seats look balance and original, very presentable brown fabric with very little wear and tidy black floor carpet.
Brown might not be to everybody’s taste, but this was a popular interior trim colour of the time, the condition is in excellent shape for its age.
The ‘Sport’ embossed dash is correct and in good order with no drilled additional dials or switches.
From a time when cars, and indeed life in general, seemed so much simpler and perhaps all the better for that, this Sport represents an ideal entry to the Fast Ford fraternity for relatively little up-front expenditure
Great boot space considering it was a South African car. Ford sent fuel tanks from the Capri instead of the small standard Escort fuel tanks suitable for greater distance. Remember you could be travelling for hours at a time in 1970’s and not see a soul, let alone a fuel station in South Africa. Obviously, there is lack MOTs due to the car being an import from South Africa. Documentation with the car comprises the relevant NOVA paperwork. Service history and paper work with receipts will be arriving with us soon, if not please contact us on request.