page last edited: 28 December 2017

Ford Consul Cortina - 139


I thought I'd have to wait ages for one of these when I began the Dinky collection in earnest but in fact it was one of the first to come my way. I am so pleased as I love it. There is another similar model 133, which is the face lifted version with the wider grille incorporating the sidelights and jewelled tail lights.

I really don't know what Ford were doing with the Consul name in 1963. In the Observers Book of Automobiles there is a Consul Cortina, a Consul Capri and a Consul Classic, the year after there might well have been a Consul Corsair, Zephyrs were still Zephyrs but the Consul as a Consul has disappeared. Why did they add 'Consul' to everything else bigger than an Anglia?

There is a mention in the book though of a Cortina 'Sports Special' which came in white with a green stripe and had a 1558cc engine with a Lotus twin overhead camshaft engine. The model as delivered by Ford produced 53.5bhp, the Sports Special wound that up to 105bhp, double!, and became eventually the Lotus Cortina. An all time classic. One of the hottest cars I ever owned was a Cavalier SRi, 25 years after the Lotus Cortina and just getting the same power from 1800cc with probably twice the kerb weight. My SRi was wild as hell, the Lotus Cortina must have been a nightmare with drum brakes and archaic suspension and all that power, although it might just have been a heap of fun as well.

I do like this car though, it also brings back a memory. My brother had one of these. Exactly this model. Here goes the story. He was about 18, the car was midnight blue and he loved it. He polished it to a mirror finish in only the way a truly deep blue can be done. I was about ten at the time and had as one did, a few pet lambs. We did live on a farm in Cumbria. It was late summer and my tup (ram) lamb had grown big with fine horns. He was wandering about the yard and caught sight of his reflection in the side of the highly polished Ford.

We were all in the house and because the doors and windows were open we became aware slowly of a sort of rhythmic banging. We went out to the yard and found my young ram charging and head-butting his reflection in the drivers door, which by now had a corrugated finish due to repeated attacks from a horned head. He had seen his reflection and thought it was a rival and reacted in the only way he knew how, head-on. Funny that my brother didn't see the joke.



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