The phrase “fast Fords” might sound as American as apple pie, but folks in the UK and Australia would beg to differ. Ford’s British and European operations in particular have produced some of the coolest cars to ever wear the blue oval—cars like the Escort RS1600 or the RS200. The 1986–92 Sierra RS Cosworth—a bland, Belgian-built commuter car turned touring car champion—is definitely on that list. Two Sierra Cosworths (aka “Cossies”) are up for grabs at Bonhams’ upcoming UK-based MPH online auction, scheduled for May 30.
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I had a Merkur XR4Ti and loved it. I confess I bought it primarily because of the double spoilers which set its otherwise bland appearance apart from anything else sold in America. (My wife described it as a potato bug.) It was a tossable, quick (for its time) alternative to big bucks sports cars. I loved it. Two problems: I could easily beat the synchros into second gear (Crunch!) and the dealer.... Well, they were sold through Lincoln dealers and they couldn't care less about the car. The service departments were used to dealing with land yachts and slush boxes. When I tried to assert my rights under the warranty, they claimed they couldn't reproduce the problem. Infuriated, I traded it in for an Acura Legend.
Drove the 4 wheel drive version on a road trip from Geneva to Rome and back. It belonged to a friend, a former motorcycle racer, who had bumped the horsepower to 350. What a rocket and also a sleeper. Cruise up behind a big Merc or Audi at 200kph on the Autostrada and invariably the other driver would look in his/her rearview mirror, speed up and then pull into the right lane. As soon as I passed, they were right on my back bumper trying to figure out what the 4 door Ford was.