European Export: 1975 Ford Escort 1600 Sport Mk II
Mentioning the name Ford Escort will typically incite fear and loathing from the American automotive enthusiast, but ask a European petrolhead and they will regal you with great stories about a little Ford built in Britain and Germany. That is because the European Ford Escort was not a pathetic little crapbox that ate headgaskets like a tween eats Twizzlers, but instead it was a capable rear-drive saloon with a rally credentials and decent built quality. Find this 1975 Ford Escort Mk II offered for $16,500 in Redding, CA via craigslist. Tip from Kaibeezy.
In truth this is a bit more that I’d like to spend on a vintage Mk II Escort, not because they aren’t cool cars, but because it is a bit more than the current market supports. However, this example looks really well done, with a nice set of wheels and rally lights up front.
Under the hood is a 1.6 liter Ford Kent inline-4 (funny that the Europeans call this the Kent engine, but in ‘Murica it is called the Pinto engine…haha!) that produces something like 84 horsepower. This one is mated to a 4-speed manual gearbox, but precious little additional info is included in the ad.
See another classic offered for cheap? firstname.lastname@example.org
Ari Vatanen was magic in the Escort in the early 80's before Group B.
The Pinto engine was the 2000cc SOHC, variant of that was the YB Cosworth motor DOHC turbocharged. The Kent motor that's in this car is the pushrod motor that Ford had variations of for years. The one in this Escort is a 1600cc crossflow motor sometimes known as the Formula Ford engine. The Kent block was used in Lotus twin cams and in Cosworth BD motors. Gotta get back to my Green Lantern comic book making too much noise in my parents' basement.
mr lou? you sounded like mrkwong right there 😉
Adding to mister lou's comments…
In Europe they also referred to the 1.3L, 1.6L, 1.8L, and 2.0 SOHC engines as Pinto engines.
The key notation being that they were the SOHC series and not pushrod. Back in the day the flexible timing belt system was very innovative.
The Lima, Ohio 2.3 SOHC engine was not in the same family. As far as I know Europe never got this engine.
I really like the Pinto 2.0 liter engine. I have had Pinto's and Capri's with this engine. Mechanically adjusted solid cam followers, SOHC, good flowing heads, and 5 main bearings made them bullet proof and high revving.
I look for any loosely related excuse to post this Pinto racing video. Sorry!
I hope you will enjoy it!
Listen to the engine not skip a beat while reeling in Porsche after Porsche. (911s too!)