2022 | London Auction
1966 Lotus Cortina Mk I
£125,000 - £175,000| Without Reserve
One of Seven Ford Competition Department Cars Sent to the US in 1966
Impressive Race History and Résumé
1966 SCCA Southwest Division B Sedan Champion
Eligible for Many Historic Motor Racing Events
Accompanied by Parts Catalogue, Correspondence, and Documentation
Lotus Racing Legend
1,588 CC DOHC Inline 4-Cylinder Engine
Twin Weber 40 DCOE Carburetors
Estimated 150 BHP at 5,500 RPM
4-Speed Manual Gearbox
Servo-Assisted Front Disc and Rear Drum Brakes
Front Suspension with MacPherson Struts and Coil Springs
Rear Live Axle with Semi-Elliptical Leaf Springs
Sensing sales benefits from a motor sports association, Ford contracted with Colin Chapman’s Lotus to develop the Cortina into a racing contender. Originally developing 105 hp, the 1.6-liter twin-cam engine featured an aluminum cylinder head, 9.5:1 compression, and twin Weber carburetors. Other alterations included additional lightweight aluminum componentry, and revised braking and suspension systems. Piloted by Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart, Vic Elford, and Graham Hill, the Lotus Cortina won the 1964 BRSCC Saloon Car Championship and 1965 European Touring Car Championship.
According to the consignor, this 1966 Cortina Mk I is one of seven works cars ordered by the Ford Competition Department from Lotus. Assigned to Charles Barns of Texas, this car was entered into the competitive SCCA Division B racing series, winning 29 of 40 races, and the 1966 championship. In 1967, Barns campaigned the Cortina in the Trans Am “under two-liter class,” before selling it in October 1970 to Donald Gwynne of Oklahoma, who continued to race it. The Cortina Mk I would later pass to long-term (1971–2011) caretaker Robert Winkelmann, who raced the car in its present green and gold livery.
Presented in largely original condition, this Cortina Mk I will require recommissioning work before any further racing or competition. Accompanied by parts catalogue, correspondence, and documentation, this original, highly successful Competition Department Lotus Cortina would be a worthy addition to any Ford or Lotus collection.