Overall condition: Excellent
Number of owners:7
History: Very Good
MOT: July 2023
The first Sierra Cosworths appeared in 1986 as 3 door hatches, but in 1988 the new, fresh looking Sapphire saloon got the RS treatment.
The second generation four-door Sierra Sapphire Cosworth was assembled in Genk, Belgium, with the UK-built Ford-Cosworth YBB engine. Cylinder heads on this car were early spec two wheel drive heads and also the “later” two wheel drive head which had some improvements which made their way to the 4X4 head. Suspension was essentially the same with some minor changes in geometry to suit a less aggressive driving style and favour ride over handling.
Spindles, wheel offset and other changes were responsible for this effect. Approximately 13,140 examples were produced during 1988-1989 and were the most numerous and lightest of all Sierra Cosworth models. Specifically the left hand drive models (LHD) which saved weight with a lesser trim level such as roll up rear windows, no air conditioning etc.
In the UK, the RHD 1988-1989 Sierra Sapphire RS Cosworths are badged with small “Sapphire” badges on the rear door window trims. All 1988-1989 LHD models are badged and registered as Sierra RS Cosworths with no Sapphire nomenclature at all. “Sapphire” being viewed as a Ghia trim level that saw power rear windows, air conditioning and other minor options.
The Sapphire Cosworth, being based on a different shell to the original three-door Cosworth, along with its more discreet rear wing, recorded a drag co-efficient of 0.33, thus allowing it to register slightly better performance figures (top speed of 150 mph and 0-60 of 6.1 seconds) compared to the original Cosworth.
The white paint of the Sapphire is in excellent condition, the owner having decided to refresh the car around 10 years ago and have it professionally repainted. This remains looking superb with a deep gloss and very few stone chips have spoilt the finish over the years, although there is a small area of paint marks on the rear bumper.
At the same time the alloy wheels were refurbished, and again look fantastic with virtually no marks on them, and they are fitted with Michelin Pilot tyres with very good tread.
Around the car the lamp lenses are bright and clear, and it even has that most ‘80s of features, headlamp wipers.
The current owner has had this car for 25 years and has spent a lot of time and a great deal of money maintaining and improving the Cosworth.
As well as routine service, it has received an uprated clutch, L6 Evolution chip from Motorsport Developments. It has a cold air intake and Bailey DV24 dump valve, and the engine was professionally rebuilt around the same time as the car was painted and now has a stainless exhaust fitted.
The factory RS Recaro bucket seats are in lovely condition, the grey velour shows very little sign of wear and there is just a little bagging of the cloth on the seat base and the rear seats show almost no sign of use.
The carpets are in great shape, there are fitted mats which have protected the floors well and the dashboard and dashtop are also very good with no marks or cracks, and the original Ford factory radio and separate amplifier are present.
The door cards have little sign of wear but the blue-grey vinyl of the cards has shrunk in places causing small splits at some seams.
Eighties nostalgia may be strong at the moment, but in the case of the Sapphire Cosworth it is well deserved. This was THE blue collar super car, an attainable poster car that lived up to the hype. This example is in fantastic condition and drives very well, ready and perfect to enjoy this summer.
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