Ford Granada Mk1 and Consul buying guide (1972-1977)
Ford Granada Mk1 and Consul buying guide (1972-1977)http://www.classicandperformancecar.comClassic and Performance CarClassic and Performance Car
After the awkward-looking Zephyr and Zodiac MkIV, the Consul and Granada Mk1 were a breath of fresh air, with their appealing styling and spacious, luxurious interiors. In typical Ford fashion there was a model for everyone, thanks to a choice of three engines (at any one time), five trims and three bodystyles.
Buyers could also choose between four-speed manual or three-speed automatic transmissions on some models; buy one of the latter with a 3.0 V6 and you can imagine you’re the chairman of the board as you swish along in seventies luxury.
By the time production was wound up in 1977, almost 850,000 examples of the Granada Mk1 had been built – compared with just under 123,000 copies of its predecessor. Both cars enjoyed a five-year production span, which just goes to show how right Ford was with the original Granada.
Which one to buy
You need to buy the very best Granada you can find, because if you insist on waiting until your ideal spec crops up, you might be hanging around a rather long time. These cars are now depressingly rare and some of those that appear for sale are tatty, although many are in very good condition. So if you want a really good one you’ll have to take what’s available.
Unsurprisingly it’s the 3.0-litre cars that are the most sought after, and (to a lesser degree) the 2.5s. There aren’t many 2.0-litre cars left, whether it’s the V4 unit or the Pinto; the latter is more powerful, smoother and much easier to get parts for. The V6 engines are much smoother than the four-cylinder alternatives and the bigger powerplants tended to be fitted to the most highly specified cars. There aren’t many 2.5s left either though, which is why whatever you buy, it’ll probably have a 3.0-litre V6.
In theory there’s a choice of saloon, estate or coupe bodystyles to choose from, but the reality is that most of the cars that are available are four-door saloons – estates are especially unusual.
Tech spec - Ford Granada 3.0 V6
Engine 2994cc, V6 Power 138bhp @ 5000rpm Torque 174lb ft @ 3000rpm Top speed 113mph 0-60mph 9.1sec Consumption 20mpg Gearbox Four-speed manual
What to look for
• As you’d expect, corrosion is an issue – especially in the inner sills, which aren’t easy to fix properly as the rear subframe usually has to be removed. Front inner wings rot too, but as the outer wings bolt on, access is good.
• Front and rear valances corrode, and on cars with a sunroof, expect rust in the rear pillars, into which the drain channels feed rainwater. Door bottoms, the leading edge of the bonnet and the trailing edge of the boot lid can dissolve too.
• Listen for camshaft wear on the Pinto engine (given away by a clinking noise); also beware of buying a 76bhp economy special as they’re underpowered.
• On the V4, the oil pump drive fails without warning, scrapping the engine. The bearings can also fail for the balancer shaft; if they’ve gone, it’ll be obvious. Check for oil and water leaks from blown head gaskets, and if the bottom end is rumbling or the valvegear is noisy, steer clear.
• The Essex V6 shares its design with the V4 but it’s stronger and smoother, although blown head gaskets and cracked cylinder heads are common. The oil pump is driven from the distributor by a hexagonal shaft which wears and breaks, wrecking the powerplant. If the car has been jacked up by its sump, the oil pump will be damaged. The V6’s fibre timing gear can break; steel replacements can be fitted though.
• Most surviving Granadas and Consuls are autos, but whatever gearbox is fitted it’ll be a tough unit. But wear is inevitable, so check the colour, state and level of fluid in an auto and see if the changes are smooth. If they’re jerky, a rebuild is probably on the cards.
• There’s a gearbox cooler built into the radiator which starts to leak after a while. Once water gets into the transmission it’ll be wrecked.
• The driveshafts incorporate a CV joint which wears, so feel for play and listen for clicking as drive is taken up. Fitting replacements isn’t costly or hard though.
• Make sure all of the lighting is there and that it works okay; rear lenses are extinct while headlamps aren’t easy to find any more.
• Interior trim is available only on a used basis, and with lots of materials, colours and finishes offered, finding exactly what you need to replace a damaged trim panel or seat could take a while.
• Much of the exterior brightwork is also hard to find now, so make sure that everything is there and intact.
1972: Consul and Granada replace Zephyr/Zodiac MkIV in April. Consul comes with 2.0 V4, 2.5 V6 or 3.0 V6 engines. Granada gets V6s only. Estate launched in September. 1973: Granada 2.5 discontinued, standard power steering for 3.0 cars. 1974: Granada Ghia launched, along with a coupe edition (the latter was offered from the outset in Europe). Pinto 2.0 engine supersedes the 2.0 V4 unit. 1975: Facelift brings new grilles and instruments. Consul name dropped. 1976: Pinto economy option launched with 75bhp. UK production ends. 1977: German production ends as Granada MkII takes over.