1 FORD ES­CORT RS1800 (1975-77)

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Classic Car Tours -

WHY IT’S HERE A ho­molo­ga­tion spe­cial to re­place the MkI RS1600 and con­tinue Ford’s as­pi­ra­tions for rally tri­umph. Still Ford’s most suc­cess­ful rally car

This is prob­a­bly the rarest of all rear-drive Es­corts, es­pe­cially in un­mod­i­fied road trim. Yet that’s hardly sur­pris­ing as one would have cost you 64% more than an Es­cort 1600 Sport in 1975. So just 109 were reg­is­tered in the UK in the three years the RS1800 was pro­duced, and a large chunk of those headed off for the rally stages.

As you can see from the spec­i­fi­ca­tions, in fac­tory trim with a sin­gle twin-choke carb on its BDA en­gine the RS1800 was ac­tu­ally no ball of fire, merely fast enough to be a fun car to drive. But in full-on rally trim that same BDA could be tweaked to pump out over 250bhp, enough to bring the MkII Es­cort five suc­ces­sive RAC Rally wins and the World Rally Cham­pi­onships for both team and driver in 1979.

That en­sures that the RS1800 will al­ways be a leg­end, prac­ti­cally a de­ity to Blue Oval devo­tees, and is still ral­lied suc­cess­fully to­day in his­toric events. Where it in­vari­ably does very well.

As be­fits a rally car, they’re bi­ased to­wards over­steer, in a more con­trolled man­ner than MkI

Twin-Cams thanks to sus­pen­sion re­vi­sions. So you can still hang that tail out at will and play silly beg­gars – in a fast Ford it’s al­most rude not to.

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