Follow by Email

Thursday, March 12, 2015

This Dusty Lotus Cortina Mk1 is a Barn Fresh Beauty


Copyright © 2015 Bold Ride LLC.
lotus cortina mark-1-1 photo

If you haven’t heard, Lotus is on a bit of a roll. The storied British marque has had its fair share of financial trouble over the years but with huge sales increases and allegedly a lightweight SUV on the way… its stock seems to be rising.
Also on the upswing are its classic car prices. But don’t fret, not all Cortinas are tucked away in collections just yet. This 1966 Mk1 Cortina has been freshly pulled out of its barn residence of 24 years. Despite showing its age, it looks like a remarkably all-original car. Looking to simplify and add lightness to your life? It’s up for sale on eBay.

lotus cortina mark-1 ebay photo

In the Ford universe, the Cortina (named after the Italian ski town of Cortina d’Ampezzo) was designed to be an everyday car for everyday Britain, and it absolutely was. But in 1962, Ford turned to Lotus’ Colin Chapman to give the Cortina a bit of a kick in the pants.

 Chapman shoehorned his newly designed twin-cam 1.6-liter engine into the Ford saloon, good for a brisk 105 horsepower, and Ford ordered 1000 to be built for Group 2 racing homologation.

Lotus handled the production duties of the Mk1 Cortina at its Cheshunt plant, putting its touch not only on the engine, but also a new close ratio gearbox (from the Lotus Elan), lightweight aluminum panels for the doors, hood, and boot lid, and a revised front and rear suspension.

 And if you wanted a special color… well, tough. Nearly every Mk1 Cortina came adorned in Ermine White with a Sherwood Green flash.

lotus cortina mark 1 engine interior photo

Being that this is a Mark 1, it’s one of just 3,306 Cortinas produced between 1963 and 1966, and one of an even smaller group to make its way over to US shores.

 The seller emphasizes its rust-free condition and low 44,000 miles, but is candid it does have its fair share of imperfections. Still, a barn fresh Cortina is better than no Cortina!