∙Outstanding, original specification ∙Past restoration to a high standard ∙Magazine featured
The Mk1 Ford Escort RS2000 was, if you will, a proof of concept. Ford wanted to know how the buying public would respond to a ‘hot’ version of the traditional family saloon. Little did Ford know, however, just how huge that reaction would be. We adored it, we clambered over each other to get through the dealership doors to get one and we proved that if you stick a snorty 2.0 in a small Ford, we’re all ears. It was a huge success. And this was a car on which Ford had exercised some restraints. Other than some slightly wider wings, some chassis strengthening and of course, that engine, it was still just a Mk1 Escort. One that only the clued up would be able to identify from the others.
With the Mk2, the need for an RS2000 version was obvious. But Ford was more confident now, and so it went a bit bolder with the styling. Enter stage left that distinctive, instantly recognisable ‘droop snoot’ front end and lower chin spoiler. This, combined with the RS alloys, the stripes, the rear spoiler and the logos mean the Mk2 RS2000 was a car you’d never mistake for anything else.
First registered on 5th of July 1976, this RS2000 with the unusual registrations OOO708P was finished in gloss red with contrasting black vinyl roof, black interior trim and RS four-spoke alloy wheels. It was, and still is, every bit the looker.
Of course, being an old Ford, the rust did catch up with it by 2003. However, bidders need not fret. After a complete, expert restoration at that time, the car is now in exceptional condition from front to back. Restored to standard specification, this RS2000 is a welcome sight in a part of the classic car world that is so often associated with cars being modified. In factory spec from front to back, this is an RS2000 as Ford wanted you to enjoy it.
The restoration covered repairs to the front wings, chassis rails, scuttle, A pillars, floors, inner and out rear arches, and boot floor as well as various other local repairs. The car was painted, the roof vinyl was replaced, new door panels and carpets were sourced, the wheels were refurbished and of course, a complete mechanical overhaul was carried out. A full service, new fluids and belts, new coolant system, new exhaust, the list goes on. Nothing was missed.
There is ample paperwork for the car, including a full workshop manual. The paperwork covers all the restoration, carried out by MGC Engineering. There is documentation to cover everything done to the car, and also proof of payment to the tune of over £8,000. Furthermore, there is also a collection of photographs that show the various stages of the restoration, serving as evidence as to just how in depth it was.
There are also myriad other invoices from the likes of GS Escorts and Burton Power for all the parts that were bought along the way to help complete the restoration. Exhaust, hoses, engine parts, gaskets, fluids, it’s all there.
There is paperwork from the early days of the RS2000’s life, sales invoices, older paperwork pertaining to servicing and upkeep. It’s a veritable time capsule of information.
And finally, there is also a copy of Classic Ford Magazine in which this RS2000 was featured as part of a ‘Professionals’ themed feature back in 2006. This does of course mean there are pictures of the car smashing through a stack of cardboard boxes because, well, that’s what you have to do when talking about The Professionals!
Having lived in Ireland for a number of years, there is no MOT history to show. However, the car is of course now MOT exempt and has recently been fully serviced and as such, is ready to go!
The cockpit of the RS2000 is in excellent overall condition. The front bucket seats are excellent, with no wear nor so much as a hint of damage or neglect. The rear seats are also in excellent order. The door cards and rear internal panels are in great condition. Normally they warp and distort over time, and the vinyl can rip. No such issue here though, as they all present wonderfully. Even the chrome beading on the door cards is good.
With the doors open, there are no horrors to observe in the A pillars, serving as testament to the quality of the restoration. All the door rubbers are good, too. Being a Ford of a certain age, there are some additional locks in the doors, but these seem to have been fitted to a high standard.
As for the rest of the interior, headlining is good, with no rips or tears. The glass is all in good order, as are all the rubbers. The dashboard is excellent, and reads clearly. The only thing of note is some light wear/age around some of the controls such as for the heater. There is a modern Pioneer head unit fitted. On that note though, there is some bad news. The rear parcel shelf has been fitted, badly, with some aftermarket speakers. This will need to be addressed. Have a look at the pictures to see what we mean. Also, while we’re looking at things to sort, the four-spoke RS steering wheel is in good physical condition. However, it would benefit from some colour, as the leather had faded over time.
Finally, the boot is clean and dry. There is no serious rust to be aware of, though in some of the seams around the boot opening, there are some small cracks coming through - this is an older restoration, remember. The boot rubber is good, the floor too, and the lower parts of the boot wells have been rust-proofed.
By and large, this is a very attractive vehicle. The Venetian Red paint was clearly expertly applied, as it still boasts a deep shine after all those years since the restoration. The panel gaps are excellent across the car, and the all-important nosecone is in good condition and appears to have escaped having ever come into contact with anything other than air. The doors open and close without so much as a hint of a drop. It's a very, very pretty car. It even has the rarer and correct Altissimo rear lamp lens!
The four-spoke RS alloy wheels have been refurbished in the past and are free from any major dings or dents as a result. The black painted inserts have some slight flaking, however. Again, as an older restoration, this is merely indicative of the age. There is certainly no corrosion. They all wear good, healthy rubber.
The roof is 95% excellent. The vinyl has some slight issues in the lower corners by the rear screen, but it’s nothing to get too bothered by. There’s no sign of any rust under the roof - that’s the main thing.
Being an older restoration, there is some evidence of time having caught up. There is some bubbling on one of the rear arches, and the lower edge of the passenger door looks like it would need some attention sooner rather than later. The sills look to be rock solid though, as do all the pillars. It’s merely a few small things that need to be sorted. But none that will stop you from jumping in this car and enjoying it straight away.
The odometer reads a mere 24 miles, but it’s safe to say it’s covered more than that over the years. Looking through the paperwork, 100,024 miles seems likely. It had 47k in 1992. 100k is nothing though, and still well below average. However, the mileage is somewhat moot given the restoration and consequent minimal use the car has had. The engine has been overhauled, meaning the 2.0 Pinto is in rude health. It starts up at the first turn of the key and idles happily. It gets to temperature with no issue, and happily stays there. On the move, it pulls well, and sounds glorious as it does. The Weber carb has been rebuilt, and there is a new four-branch manifold fitted to a new exhaust system.
The engine bay is very well presented, with no rust to be seen in the key areas like the strut tops, chassis rails, inner wings or bulkhead/heater bubble. There is plenty of seam sealer in place, keeping the water out. The engine bay is clean, and everything looks recent. It’s definitely the kind of thing you’ll be showing off at the local RSOC meets!
Under the car, there are no leaks and everything is impressively clean. The bolts and fixings are all good, the rolls bars are clean and free of serious corrosion and the floor and chassis have been well protected against rust. There’s a bit of surface ruse here and there, but nothing to worry about.
On the whole, it’s in good health. The seller has recently had the car serviced with new fluids and filters and as such, this RS2000 is ready to go. The brakes are good, the transmission is snappy and sharp, there is no excessive play in the steering and the differential is as quiet as a mouse.
It’s a Mk2 Ford Escort RS2000 in one of the best colours. What’s not to like? It’s got provenance, it’s got a photographic history of its restoration and it’s in brilliant condition today as a result. With the exception of a four-branch manifold, it's not been modified either, which is a rare thing to find. This is the kind of car you can bid on, collect and enjoy from the off. Sure, there are a couple of bits to sort if you want absolute perfections, but they’re just that - little things. They don’t detract from the overall appearance of this car, they don’t stop you from enjoying it and when you do button them up, you’ll have one of the nicest Mk2 RS2000s out there. Though saying that, it’s already one of the nicest. A joy to look at, a bigger joy to drive and as such, it’s a car you don’t want to miss out on.
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Although every care is taken to ensure this listing is as factual and transparent as possible, all details within the listing are subject to the information provided to us by the seller. Car & Classic does not take responsibility for any information missing from the listing. Please ensure you are satisfied with the vehicle description and all information provided before placing a bid.
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