|Engine||In-line four-cylinder, 1600cc|
Now regarded as something of a cult car, Ford’s Cortina was originally designed to bridge the gap between the Anglia and the larger Zephyr/Zodiac range. Following on from the success of the first generation Cortina, a completely new Mark II was announced in 1966, sporting fashionable, square-cut lines. Designed by Roy Haynes, the new bodyshell was again sold in both two and four-door versions, with an interior that was considerably more spacious than in its rather cramped predecessor. Although designed in Britain and forever associated with its birthplace in Dagenham, the Cortina was very much a world car, being assembled in Australia, New Zealand, the Netherlands and even several plants in Asia, including Taiwan and South Korea. Typically Ford, the Cortina was available with a myriad of engine/transmission combinations and trim levels, including the base model, Deluxe, Super, GT and 1600E, while the high performance Lotus derivative continued as a worthy flagship for the range. Early models used either the same 1300cc or 1500cc Kent engines carried over from the Mark I but new cross-flow cylinder heads were added in August 1967 resulting in markedly better fuel economy, and the 1500 replaced by a new 1600 model. The Cortina enjoyed a successful career in Australia, the Mark I proving extremely competitive in touring car racing, resulting in a spin-off homologation model badged the GT500. Locally produced Mark IIs were badged as the 220, 240, 440, GT and luxurious L with wood-panelled doors and dash. The 440 was the most popular model in the range, with standard features like the 1300cc cross-flow engine (the 1600cc was optional), a four-speed synchro gearbox, carpets, heater/demister, two-speed wipers, Aeroflow ventilation and self-adjusting disc brakes. The Cortina was one of Ford’s most successful models ever, becoming the best selling new car in 1967 and going on to chalk up more than a million sales between 1966 and 1970.