Fast Ford icon: rare Sierra RS Cosworth heads to auction

Ford Sierra RS Cosworth

“A working class hero is something to be,” declared John Lennon. Anyone who grew up idolising the Ford Sierra RS Cosworth would surely agree.

With its wide wheelarches and whale tail wing, the ‘Cossie’ looked brilliant on a bedroom wall. And its 204hp turbocharged engine offered Porsche-baiting pace: 0-62mph in 6.5 seconds and a top speed of 149mph.

Today, this iconic fast Ford is highly collectable – and a rare pre-production car is coming up for sale. If you have between £39,000 and £59,000 to spend, it could prove a savvy investment.

A possible TV star

Ford Sierra RS Cosworth

This 1985 Sierra RS Cosworth was initially part of Ford’s ‘4P’ Pre-Production Prove Out Programme. It’s one of 10 such cars built, used for development and press road-testing.

Seven of the 10 were later converted to rally cars, which makes this road-registered example a real rarity. Indeed, it’s the only pre-production RS Cosworth known to survive, its provenance verified by members of the original Ford Special Vehicle Engineering (SVE) team.

There’s also a suggestion the Sierra starred in Ford’s ‘Cars of the Future’ TV advert at the time, although it isn’t possible to prove this. 

The car has covered 68,000 miles from new and spent much of its later life in air-conditioned storage. It was recently restored at a cost of ‘tens of thousands of pounds’. 

Chasing perfect

Ford Sierra RS Cosworth

The goal of the restoration was to return the Ford to as-new condition. Outside, it wears original Moonstone Blue paintwork, with replacement lights, plastic mouldings, door and window seals, and a new front splitter.

Inside, there’s new headlining and restuffed front seats, along with the original three-spoke steering wheel and Ford radio/cassette. 

Classic car purists will gleefully note the original UK registration number (returned when the car was repatriated from New Zealand), owner’s handbook and dealer sticker in the rear window.

The sale also includes an MOT certificate valid until June 2021. So you can start driving it straight away.

Slip-sliding away

Ford Sierra RS Cosworth

We sampled a Sierra RS Cosworth from Ford’s heritage fleet back in 2016. Here’s an excerpt from our review, giving a flavour of how the car drives:

‘Two hundred and four horses was an enviable stable in 1986, but even a Fiesta ST tops that today. The Sierra’s closest descendant, the Mk3 Focus RS, has 350hp.

‘Even so, floor the right pedal and the winged warrior still feels quick, its raucous four-pot rasping as the rear tyres break traction on damp Dagenham roads. The gearshift is a little rubbery, the steering slightly slow-witted, but there’s no shortage of feedback.

‘Find a quiet B-road (or an empty McDonalds car park) and the Sierra is more than happy to go sideways. Yet it’s less intimidating than I expected, despite the total lack of electronic traction aids. Don’t expect the scalpel-sharp precision of an E30 M3, but the Cosworth isn’t the blunt instrument its Essex-boy image might suggest.’

Auction action

Ford Sierra RS Cosworth

If you’re interested in bidding on the Cosworth, visit TheMarket.co.uk, where the online auction starts on 23 July, ending on 30 July.

“This car is a piece of Ford history! Not only is this one of the most desirable fast Fords made, but this is one of the very first examples ever built,” says Tristan Judge, director of The Market.

“The auction will be a very special opportunity for enthusiasts and collectors looking for a genuine Sierra RS Cosworth, with a price tag which is within reach for serious buyers.” 

This working-class hero is unlikely to sell for a working-class price. But if you can afford it, few modern classics have such universal appeal.

ALSO READ

We reunite Ford Lotus Cortina with its original owner after 40 years

Ford Fiesta XR2 Mk2 review: the hot hatch we’d choose over a Peugeot 205 GTI

Mk1 Ford Mondeo review: the ‘world car’ you should buy now

Related Articles

1 COMMENT

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Discover

Latest

This early Porsche 928 is a glorious celebration of 40 years of the model

It's being raced by Richard Attwood and is on display at the NEC Classic Motor Show

Celebrity cars star at Race Retro auction

Cars formerly owned by Mark Blundell, Bruce Willis, Jay Kay and Rowan Atkinson set to go under the hammer at the Race Retro Classic Car Sale on 24 February 2018

Opinion: this retro Caterham isn’t rubbish, I am

Yes, the Caterham Seven Sprint really is better than us

Santa would drive a Subaru BRAT

The Subaru BRAT is good enough for the President of the United States of America AND Father Christmas

Best of British: what’s your favourite BL car ever made?

AR Online is holding a poll to find the nation's favourite BLMC car