The owner of this 1965 Ford Lotus-Cortina is only interested in a trade; apparently to keep his collection interesting. Since 1965 was a transition year for the Lotus-modified Cortinas it may be worth it to find something Italian to trade if you don’t already have something worth the $50 – $60 thousand these things are going for these days (January 2017). This is starting to sound like quite an adventure. This particular Cortina was made for export to Italy so it is left-hand drive as well.
According to the seller this example experienced a full restoration 10 years ago and has only covered a “few km” since. Included with the vehicle is all the original paperwork. The seller does not provide the chassis number so the build date is not known however July of ’65 is when the so called “A-frame” suspension with coil-over shocks was replaced with the leaf spring design from the GT. An interesting note here is that due to production processes, leaf spring cars may also have body shell features from the “A-frame” type as stock was used up. There is a bit of confusion around when exactly this all occurred so asking the seller for more photographs is imperative.
From the photographs it appears that the restoration was carried out to a high standard. Only close inspection would reveal the amount of (if any) welding that was necessary to replace corroded sheet metal during restoration. Another option would be to contact someone in the Lotus-Cortina community as these chaps typically know details about each surviving car. This is also a good way to authenticate it as a true Lotus variant.
Interior looks great with its new GT-spec seats and trim although the steering wheel seems to be a bit light in color – the wood should match the shift knob – however perhaps this is a known production variance. Another aspect of the transition was that the gearbox was significantly upgraded in October of ’65. The transmission from the Ford Corsair V4 was fitted which provided more sporting gear ratios. Again without knowing the build date it is not possible to know – requesting more pictures is the only way to be certain.
The engine compartment gives a clue that this is an older restoration. The 105 HP mill appears free from grunge and grime and the black cam-cover looks correct.
Overall this is a nice older restoration with the allure of the transition year – is this a leaf spring car with the differential bump in the boot? Only photos will tell! Find the contact information here at Car and Classic.