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Author Topic: Ford Capri RS 3.1 and RS 2600  (Read 9482 times)

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Offline Tony

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Ford Capri RS 3.1 and RS 2600
« on: September 04, 2006, 20:16:09 PM »

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Five years after the very successful introduction of the Mustang, Ford introduced a similar model in Europe. Although scaled down to suit the European market, the Capri featured all elements that made the Mustang a success in North America. The combination of a long nose and a small cabin gave the Capri the right looks and still enough space to seat two adults and two children, which made it a sensible family car as well.

At its launch the Capri had the looks and practicality to become a big hit. Now all it needed was a powerful engine to go with it. At its 1969 launch it was equipped with a V4 engine, which produced just over 50 horses. Clearly this was not going to be enough to give the Capri the required performance.

Motor racing success has often proven to be a very powerful marketing tool, so it came as no surprise that Ford announced a racing program soon after the launch of the all new Capri in 1969. With a slightly modified Capri 2300 GT, Ford competed in GT racing in 1969 and 1970 and with some success, highlighted by a class victory in the Tour de France Automobile in 1969.

For 1970, Weslake was called upon to design more sophisticated aluminum heads for the Ford V6 engine. Communication problems between the Cologne based Ford racing team and the British Weslake team greatly hampered the development of the new engines. This ment the Capri was not on pace in the GT class anymore and halfway through the season Ford decided to switch to Group 2 Touring car racing for which at least 1000 examples had to be produced.

Especially for Touring car racing, the RS 2600 model was launched as a homologation special. With the help of Peter Ashcroft, the 2.6 litre V6 was modified to displace just under 3.0 litres. Fitted with the Weslake heads and Kugelfischer fuel injection the OHV V6 engine produced well over 280 bhp. Compared to its nearest and usually more powerful rivals, the Capri RS was as light as the proverbial feather, which gave it an edge over its competition.

In 1971 the Capri RS was the car to beat in the European Touring Car Championship and it was beaten only once. Jochen Mass took the driver's title, but it was Alfa Romeo who campaigned in a smaller class, that took the manufacturer's title. More competition was expected in 1972 from the newly founded BMW Motorsport team. Driving force behind the new team was Jochen Neerpasch, who had left Ford after the first race of 1972.

With the engine developed as far as the regulations allowed, Ford focussed on the chassis and especially on the suspension for 1972. Road going Capris featured McPherson struts front suspension and a live axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs at the rear and according to the regulations no changes could be made to this basic setup. Ford evaded this rule by fitting very thin and basically useless leaf springs at the rear combined with 'additional' coil springs, which completely took over from the leafs.

With the BMW team still setting up, the Capris were rarely matched by anyone or on any track. The car dominated like it did in the previous year, but now Ford clinched both titles. Capri's were also successfully entered in the 24 Hours of LeMans and Nurburgring 1000 km races, winning their class in both events. In 1973 the odds favoured BMW, with their new 3.5 litre engine 3.0 CSL model. However a number of rule changes at the end of the season tipped the scales once again in favour of the Capri RS.
For the 1974 season the sport's governing body allowed DOHC heads to be fitted, of which only 100 examples had to be produced. With the help of Cosworth the new 3.4 litre quad-cam V6 engine was developed in 1973. The engine and heads were homologated by a short production run of the Capri RS 3100. Another big modification was to move the radiators from the nose to the rear wheel arches for weight balance purposes. Performance of the revised Capri increased by quite a bit, with the engine pumping out around 440 - 450 bhp at around mid-season.

BMW was close on Ford's heels with a 100 car production run of the DOHC 3.0 CSL. The Capri and CSL were the fastest cars in the championship, but neither eventually took the championship. At the end of the season it was Zakspeed who pipped the two works teams with their Ford Escort RS 1600s. The spiralling costs of the very advanced races and the oil-crisis meant the end of the Group 2 Touring car championship.

Ford never raced Capri's as a works team again, but this was not the end of the Capri's racing career.
In 1977 Group 5 racers loosely based on the third series Capri began racing the Capri once more.
The silhouette racer featured a full spaceframe chassis with a 1.4 litre turbocharged engine producing well over 300 bhp.
Again the Capri proved to be a very efficient racing machine.

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« Last Edit: January 05, 2012, 11:04:33 AM by Dave »



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weslake

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Re: Ford Capri RS 3.1 and RS 2600
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2007, 10:40:02 AM »
Hi

Here at Weslake we now have most of the original Engine parts for the Cologne Group 2 car V6 engine back in production. All parts are made from the original tooling and or drawings. We have also looked at making new Blocks but they would be expensive and need a batch of about 10 to be made at one time. Improvements could be made.

Weslake

« Last Edit: December 15, 2007, 12:47:35 PM by Taps »

Dave73

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Re: Ford Capri RS 3.1 and RS 2600
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2007, 12:06:22 PM »
Great piece of History lads, super to see that interest on the greatest looking Ford ever built (sorry boys)returning to the forefront of interest.

 

Mr Westlake, how much for a block if 10 were built, and can you get hold of the drawings for the 3.1 GAA block and Cosworth 24Valve heads, ive been trying but no joy as yet. Are you doing a comprehensive parts listing for the Westlake, if you are id like to see one.

 

Dave


weslake

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Re: Ford Capri RS 3.1 and RS 2600
« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2007, 22:43:45 PM »
Quote from: Dave73
Great piece of History lads, super to see that interest on the greatest looking Ford ever built (sorry boys)returning to the forefront of interest.

 

Mr Westlake, how much for a block if 10 were built, and can you get hold of the drawings for the 3.1 GAA block and Cosworth 24Valve heads, ive been trying but no joy as yet. Are you doing a comprehensive parts listing for the Westlake, if you are id like to see one.

 

Dave
Thanks for the intrest we can do a price check after the new year holiday. We do not have any drawings for the GAA engine. I know that Swindon racing engines have rebuilt one. We have a customer who has two GAAs  he may let us use one to make drawings .

We have not issued a full parts price list yet but a list with prices for the most popular parts is on the website. www.weslake.co.uk  in the Capri section

Offline bigro007

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Re: Ford Capri RS 3.1 and RS 2600
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2016, 07:23:03 AM »
Hi

Here at Weslake we now have most of the original Engine parts for the Cologne Group 2 car V6 engine back in production. All parts are made from the original tooling and or drawings. We have also looked at making new Blocks but they would be expensive and need a batch of about 10 to be made at one time. Improvements could be made.

Weslake
hi
what would be the cost of such block? would you consider to have an alloy block made that would be an improvement thank

bigro0007
Calgary alberta
canada

Offline capri v8 driver

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Re: Ford Capri RS 3.1 and RS 2600
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2016, 07:48:30 AM »
Maybe this would help to answer your question.

http://www.weslake.co.uk/v6parts.htm

greetz Paul.

Capri V8 Driver.