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Escort Cosworth

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Type: Three-door hatchback Escort assembled by Karmann from Escort and Sierra
pressing in steel with 50 per cent new panels, bodykit with splitter and bonnet vents.


Diamond White, Radiant Red, Black, Polaris Grey, Pacifica Blue, Mallard Green 


Type: YBT
Capacity: 1993cc
Bore/stroke: 90.82mm x 76.95mm
Compression ratio: 8:1
Max power: 227 bhp @ 6250 rpm
Max torque: 220 lbf.ft @ 3500 rpm
Cylinders: four, in-line
Cylinder head: alloy
Block: cast iron
Installation: front-mounted, longitudinal
Valve gear: four valves per cylinder, twin belt driven overhead camshaft
Induction: Garrett AiResearch T3 turbo, intercooler, Weber Marelli management system


Type: four-wheel-drive
Gearbox: Ford MT75 with transfer box for permanent 4wd using viscous coupling, centre
differential, 34/66 front/rear torque split, viscous coupling, limited-slip rear differential
Internal ratios: 1st, 3.61:1; 2nd, 2.08:1; 3rd, 1.36:1; 4th, 1.1:1; 5th, 0.83:1
Final drive: 3.62:1


Front: MacPherson struts, coil springs, telescopic dampers, anti-roll bar
Rear: independent with coil springs, telescopic dampers, anti-roll bar


Type: power assisted rack-and-pinion


System: vacuum servo-assisted dual circuit hydraulic ABS
Front: 278mm ventilated discs
Rear: 273mm ventilated discs

Wheels & Tyres

Wheels: 8x16 in Ford RS Alloys
Tyres: 225/45 ZR rated


Max speed: 140 mph
0-60 mph: 5.7 sec


You’ll find the VIN numbers on the slam panel and stamped into the floor by the
driver’s seat underneath the sill flap. What you’ll want to see is WFOBBXGKABNG,
which is followed by five numbers.


There shouldn’t be any rust and if there is, it’s probably a result of badly repaired
accident damage. The body is hard to fix after a smash. Look closely at the seams,
panel gaps and paint for poor finishes. The front’s susceptible to stone chips and bank
on buying a new splitter as well. Battery trays and rear spoilers (especially lower one)
can bubble up.


It’s likely to have had mods and you’ll want to know the details of what’s been done
and by who. If it’s chipped, make your next stop the rolling road. Turbos can also fail
– look for white smoke from the exhaust when you floor it. Always check a car with a
cold engine, as this will show any probs from start-up. Tappet noise, knocking (piston
slap) etc. When started, check the oil pressure dial..should read at least 5 bar from
cold and then sit between minimum and 1.8 bar when warm. Also look for blue smoke
(oil in the engine, gaskets, pistons) and grey smoke (often overfuelling on ignition).
Remember, the Escort has an under engine tray for get under there and
check for any oil.


The MT75 box is tough provided you don’t get carried away with power. It can
handle up to 375 bhp, but over this and you need to think about stronger internals. The
clutch is slightly weaker and you’ll need an uprated job if the power climbs to 300
bhp+. With the 4wd system, look for any snatchiness and listen carefully for clonks
and bangs. Check CVJs (clicking noises when gone)and also propshaft joint rubbers
can perish.


The standard Escort suspension is superb (Group N). On its launch it was labelled one
of the best handling cars. Eight years on and that suspensions likely to be tired and the
dampers can sag. Quite a few owners fitted performance parts, so again, look for
receipts and any signs of dodgy work. Check for cracked top cups – will show with
any knocking noises.


Vented 278 mm discs on the front and 273 mm items on the back can stop the
standard 227 bhp, but if you’re running big power its best to uprate them. They can
also warp, but it takes some extreme driving to do this. Check for warped disks (brake
jugger) and sometimes the front knuckles can be damaged, they will then need
replacing. Check rear callipers haven’t seized and brake sharp in test drive to ensure
car stop straight.


Recaro-equipped interior is generally hard wearing, but it’s the usual story of the
driver’s seat showing the first signs of wear and tear. Getting replacements will be a
nightmare and if you’re thinking of buying a stolen/recovered that’s missing its
interior, it might be wise to think again – unless of course, you’re going for a bit of a
racer look. Check that the leather (if fitted) isn’t cracked..another expensive thing to
replace/repair. Watch for cracks and scuffs on the plastics.


Fuse box is used throughout the MkV is pretty rubbish. If the tracks burn out
(causing major electric failure) then a complete new fuse box is needed. Under
passenger side bonnet vent are two multi plugs. These can fill with water due to the
vent design..another problem area. Watch for poorly alarms/immobilisers, especially
connected to the fuel pump. You can melt a piston because of them. In general, check
everything works…EVERYTHING !!!! 

£8000 – 10,000
Before you start ranting the Escort Cossies never come up at this price, let’s explain.
To an extent you’re right, but what about sourcing you Escy Cos from abroad? It’s
possible to pick up a sound one in Germany for the above price as they’re just not
sought after over there as they are here. Ok, it’ll have left-hand-drive and you’ll have
to go through the drama of a personnel import, but it’s definitely worth a thought.

£12,000 – 13,000
The bottom price you’ll pay for a half decent Escort Cosworth in the UK. It’ll
probably have high mileage and registered on a k-plate. Cars are most likely to be
finished in Diamond White and Radiant Red. Still, it’s got to be one of the best
motors you can buy for £12,000.

£14,000 – 16,000
You’re now entering Lux territory and this kind of wedge is going to get you a good

It’s a lot of cash, but in exchange you’ll have one of the nicest big turbo Escort
Cosworths around. Concours contenders might break £20,000 barrier as will fully
modded examples. 


Down Low
The Escort RS Cosworth was the first mass-produced car that actually had
aerodynamics capable of creating downforce at the front and rear.

Tall Order
The Escort Cosworth is actually a little bit taller than both the standard Escort and the

Only the roof panel is shared with the standard Escort.

Plan B
The Escort Cosworth was only given the go-ahead after attempts to facelift the Sierra

Secret Agent
The Escort Cosworth project was give the name codename ACE.

There are many things one should check before buying an used Escort RS Cosworth. I will list the ones most easy to check and those most important here:

Check the car for any signs of repaired crash damage. If you or a mechanic (which you should bring with you if you don't know everything about cars) find signs of such, either don't buy it or take it somewhere to find out exactly what has been repaired and the quality of the repair. Some bodywork damage is no problem if it has been repaired nicely, the problem is when the crash has affected the chassis. If you suspect so; take it to an alignment jigg and check the chassis for any damage or missalignment (or better, don't buy it).
What you should do is to take off the front and rear bumpers to check for accident repair. The rear bumper is loosened by removing 4 nuts in the trunk and two screws on each rear wheelarch. The front bumper hasfour big bolts removed from underneath plus two a catches on each side in front of the front wheels. 

Get underneath the car and check for any signs of rust on the chassis and suspension. The exhaust might be rusty, but that will happen no matter what if one drives in the wet.

Get inside the car a check for rust or moisture. Remove the spare wheel and carpet in the trunk and check underneath. Lift up the rear seat bottom half and check there too. 

Check the engine, gearbox and diffs for any signs of oil or water leaks both before and after you test drive it. This means that you have to remove the cover under the engine (4screws and 4bolts). If there are any leaks, find out where they come from and how much it will cost to fix them. 

While you are underneath the car check that all drive axle boots and other rubber boots on the suspension components are intact and not cracked or worn. 

Check the tires for uneven wear. This may come from out of alignment suspension components. 
Is the amount of engine oil, coolant, brake fluid and servo oil correct ? And; Is the engine oil of such a quality that it seems that it has been changed regularly? 

Inside the car look for worn down seats and pedals, which may mean that the car has a lot of miles on the clock. And; is the wear on the upholstery comparable to the miles the seller claims the car has done? 

Is there a service book with the car ? If so; Does it seem like it has been written by the same person, the same day. Or is it a real service book ? If you are in doubt, go to the workshop where the car should be serviced according to the service book and ask them if it really has been serviced there. 
Put it somewhere dark and check that all exterior lights are functioning. Then the interior lights, such as lights in speedometer, rev-counter, boost gauge etc. Lights in switches for fog-light, heated windscreen, fan, heater. Basically everything should have lights. Especially the light in the speedo and rev-counter should work as you will have to replace the entire speedometer or rev-counter if they don't. There are no bulbs, but a inrepairable glowing string. 

When testdriving the car:
Drive it at both high and low speeds checking for any shaking or softness. If there are any this may come from worn bushings or worn steering linkage components. 

Test the brakes both braking hard, and just barely slowing the car. Any shaking and you're in for new brakedics and pads.

If the car pulls to one side or are excessively prone to follow cambers in the road this can be caused by out of alignment suspension components, worn dampers or bushings. 

Check for any strange sounds from the engine through the entire rev range, from 800 rpm to the red line. If there are any sounds that you can't identify take it to someone who can and let them figure out what's wrong. 

Check that the turbo boost pressure builds up and goes up to the redline on the boost gauge when flooring the throttle at 2500 rpm in 3rd gear or higher. 

When changing gear at high revs check that there isn't coming a lot of smoke from the car, this may be a soon-to-be-wasted turbo. It's very Expensive to buy a new one.

The gearchange should go smooth an quiet. If the second or third gear is hard to engage this can mean that the syncro-rings are worn down. And this means that the gearbox must out to be overhauled: Expensive again. 

The clutch should have no slip under any circumstances, to test it: Drive at a little over 80 km/h (50 mph) in 5th. Disengage the clutch, rev the engine to about 2000 rpm above what it was doing and let go of the clutch. If the engine immediately drops back to the original rpm area, the clutch is probably good. If it comes back slowly and the car sounds like it has a slipping automatic transmission, you have the first signs of clutch slippage. This is hard on the drivetrain and clutch so another easier on the drivetrain approach is: Floor the throttle in fifth gear around 3500 rpm on dry concrete, preferably on an uphill. If it slips, it's done (if the car isn't tuned that is, the standard clutch can only handle 300 hp or so).

When finding things that are not as the seller has stated, or things he hasn't said anything about, start getting suspicious and check everything extra carefully.

All things that you'll have to fix requires a decrease in the price the seller first stated



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