Car & Classic Magazine MENU

1976 Ford Capri L – Classified of the Week

3

By Chris Pollitt

The Ford Capri is, make no mistake, a legendary machine. It was, as Ford put it, the car you always promised yourself. It was a hairy-chested, cigarette smoking, gold-chained symbol of ‘60s machismo. It was our Mustang, and it was our muscle car. It still stands as one of the greats, a car thrashed around by Bodie and Doyle, it’s a beast. Yet despite its staggering popularity, nobody ever seems to talk about the Mk2. 

Introduced in ‘73, the Mk2 was bigger, longer and wider than the somewhat dainty Mk1. It was a more solid and more purposeful machine. It was also a clever car, aimed more at everyday driving than spirited blasts. It boasted a hatchback (the first Ford to do so) making it practical, the cabin was bigger and could comfortably house four people. But it wasn’t a car that captured our imaginations quite like the Mk1. Thanks in part to its big, ‘Deirdre Barlow’ headlights that for some, were simply not in keeping with the style of the Mk1. The Mk2 was seen as being a bit too soft, it was a car that moved too far from what the original Mk1 represented. 

Ford, Ford Capri, Ford Capri Mk2, Mk2 Capri, Ford, Classic Ford, retro Ford, motoring, automotive, classic car, retro car, carandclassic, carandclassic.co.uk

Ford of course put this right with the Mk3, which thanks to its angry, sharp, quad-headlight face was seen as a more menacing, purposeful machine. The fast Mk1 versions had quad headlamps, after all. 

When the Mk3 came along (which really was just a Mk2 face lift) we forgot all about the Mk2. The second Capri simply never enjoyed the popularity of the third, despite some impressive models like the mighty 3.0S (our Editor used to have one, as it happens). As such, values tumbled and many Mk2s went the way of the scrap yard in favour of the Mk3. Sad times. 

Ford, Ford Capri, Ford Capri Mk2, Mk2 Capri, Ford, Classic Ford, retro Ford, motoring, automotive, classic car, retro car, carandclassic, carandclassic.co.uk

That’s why this week’s classified of choice is a Mk2. It’s lovely to see one these days, but to see one in such incredible condition is on another level. This ‘76 1.6L has been the subject of a complete restoration that was only finished late last year, and as such, is about as close as you can get to finding one in ‘as new’ condition. No panel has been missed, no bolt left untouched, no mechanical element ignored. It truly is a work of art. It might not be the most muscular, being a 1.6, but don’t let that put you off. The 1.6 Pinto engine is a wonderfully solid old lump, and as such, will never let you down. 

Ford, Ford Capri, Ford Capri Mk2, Mk2 Capri, Ford, Classic Ford, retro Ford, motoring, automotive, classic car, retro car, carandclassic, carandclassic.co.uk

We adore the Mk2 Capri. For us, the big, square headlights help to give it a bullet-nose kind of look. It’s sleek, it’s unfussy and it’s elegant. This is the perfect classic Ford in our eyes. You simply don’t need a V6, or go-faster stripes to celebrate the blue oval. 

At £9,000, this Capri also represents exceptional value. Looking at the quality of the restoration, we’d wager that more money than that has been put into it. Buy this, cherish it, and keep it in this condition and you’ll own one of Ford’s now rarest classics. Go on, do it. It is, after all, the car you always promised yourself.

Enjoyed this article?

Sign up to our weekly newsletter to receive the latest articles, news, classic cars, auctions and events every Thursday - compiled expertly by the Car & Classic team

Article's featured image

It’s about the journey, not the destination…

As I’ve mentioned in the past, I own a Rover 800 Vitesse Sport. It’s my ‘forever’ car. My ongoing project. The source of a great deal of my time, money and patience. And that last one, patience, is what’s key here.  The car isn’t on the road at the moment, as I still need to […]

Article's featured image

1950 MGYA – Classified of the Week

As we type this, we’re still reeling from the suspension collapsing on our Rover 800. But we’re not, even in the throes of mechanical rage, going to blame the car’s failure on its Britishness. Britain might not be the automotive powerhouse it once was, instead adopting the policy of becoming a home to the likes […]

Article's featured image

Historic Rally Car Register – Competition Classics

Rallying has always captured the imagination of the public, the direct link between your dad’s car and a similar version being driven within inches of its life through a forest stage or through the Alps triggers the adrenaline and memory of any petrol head of a certain age. The Historic Rally Car Register was formed […]

Article's featured image

Guilty Pleasures – The Nissan Bluebird

My love for the humble Nissan Bluebird is steeped in first car nostalgia. The only trouble is, it wasn’t actually my first car. As a matter of fact, I’ve never even owned one. It was the late nineties, I was seventeen years old and all of my friends, myself included, were learning to drive. The […]

Article's featured image

Heavy Metal – Must-Have Welding Kit

For some of us, there is nothing better than getting properly involved in a classic car restoration. This of course means we have to take on the metalwork, because nothing likes to rust as much as an old car. Plus, there are huge savings to be made by doing it ourselves, not to mention the […]