Chas­ing Cars

EN­GINE 1508cc/4-cyl/OHV POWER 47bhp@4400rpm TORQUE 74lb ft@2400rpm MAX­I­MUM SPEED 75mph 0-60mph 27.2sec FUEL CON­SUMP­TION 18-24 mpg TRANS­MIS­SION RWD, three-speed man­ual MoT Ex­empt ODOME­TER 30,247 miles

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - THIS WEEK - Gil­lian Car­moodie

65 Ford Con­sul MkI 67 Mercedes-Benz SL 320 69 Mini Moke 71 Fiat 500


The en­gine fires im­me­di­ately with no un­due ex­haust smoke. Work your way up through the three-speed col­umn-change gear­box and ac­cel­er­a­tion is re­spectable enough for some­thing with just 47bhp on tap. The hy­draulic clutch works well, though the bit­ing point is a lit­tle high. Han­dling is sat­is­fy­ingly sharp and the sus­pen­sion soaks up most road im­per­fec­tions. The me­chan­i­cals be­have im­pec­ca­bly, with no un­to­ward noises from the gear­box or driv­e­train. The all­drum brakes work ef­fec­tively with no pulling, while new, well-treaded ra­dial tyres pro­vide de­cent grip.


All panel gaps are even and there are no nasty sur­prises un­der­neath that we could see. Most of the black paint still shines like new al­though there are a few chips to the left of the Con­sul bon­net badge and sub­tle ev­i­dence of paint­work re­pairs to the left of the chrome on top of the bon­net. The paint on the cor­ner of the off­side front wing is slightly cracked and there is a faint scratch above the chrome coach­line. The chrome is com­plete, with only light scratch­ing ev­i­dent on the mid-sec­tion of the ra­di­a­tor grille. Rust-free wheel arches, gleam­ing hub-caps and a fan­shaped ex­haust com­plete a very tidy over­all picture.


The gauges – speedome­ter, fuel, wa­ter tem­per­a­ture, amps and oil pres­sure – all func­tion as they should. The com­fort­able red leather front bench seat is slightly faded and cracked, but the match­ing door­cards are in fine con­di­tion. All four doors open and close with a sat­is­fy­ing clunk and the win­dows op­er­ate as they should. The red car­pets and grey-brown cloth head­lin­ing are in ex­cep­tional con­di­tion and the EKCO valve ra­dio – be­lieved to be orig­i­nal to the car – still works. The car­peted boot is clean and dry.


Lift­ing the bon­net re­veals an hon­est, clean and tidy en­gine bay with no signs of leaks or over­heat­ing. All lev­els look healthy and sit around the max­i­mum mark, while pip­ing and wiring re­mains un­mo­lested. The 1508cc en­gine has ben­e­fit­ted from a re­cent re­build, dur­ing which a dis­crete elec­tric fuel pump and new fil­ter and lines were fit­ted. All electrics, in­clud­ing the lights, in­di­ca­tors and horn, op­er­ate cor­rectly. The Con­sul comes with both the orig­i­nal own­er­ship man­ual and a ser­vice book­let.


Sur­pris­ingly few Con­sul MkIs have sur­vived – the flashier and more pow­er­ful Ze­phyr Six gets all the plau­dits – so th­ese four­cylin­der base model sa­loons are an in­creas­ingly rare sight. This very early car is still in regular use but re­mains in very good con­di­tion. It looks good value for such a well-sorted car, too.


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