A few months ago their catalogue thumped onto the door mat.
I thumbed through it in the usual way until I turned a page and my fingers froze. There was a Ford Sierra RS Cosworth in Moonstone Blue, with a guide price of £10,000-£14,000. Was this a car the market had missed?
I’ll explain. There are certain qualities a car must have before it is likely to become an appreciating asset, and the more of them it has, the more likely it is to appreciate. These include great beauty, being fantastic to drive, rarity and boasting competition intention in its original design. See how many boxes it ticks and you’ll no longer wonder why the most recent Ferrari 250 GTO to be sold went for £23 million.
So let’s spare the Cosworth’s blushes and skirt around the beauty issue. Is it rare? You bet. Forgetting the Sierra RS500, which is already out of sight, just over 6000 original two-wheel-drive Cosworth hatchbacks were built, of which just 1600 were sold in the UK.
Now consider how easy they were to crash, nick or simply ruin. Because you could get up to 400bhp from their engines, such classifieds as you can find often feature cars that have been wound up to within an inch of their lives.
Add to these those cars that have simply fallen apart over the past 26 years and it’s clear the number of clean, original Cosworth hatches left standing in this country must be a few hundred at most. And how many of those are actually on the road is another matter.
It is the last piece of the puzzle we’re here to find. Is it still good to drive? Just locating a clean example is difficult enough, but thankfully Ford retains a development car that’s standard in every way save the fitment of a roll cage.