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My 1967 Mark II Lotus Cortina

Mk II Lotus Cortinas are rare in Australia. "I estimate there are about 14", says David Fotheringham, owner of the one featured

Then go and win races on a Sunday and sell, sell, sell the road-going versions to all manner of punters on a Monday.

This is exactly what Ford did on 1962 when it released the Cortina Mark I. Colin Chapman at Lotus race cars got the contract to work on 1000 of them for homologation for Group 2 touring car racing in the UK and Europe. Ford would then sell them through its dealer network.

The folks at Lotus proceeded to install all manner of mechanical upgrades and technical wizardry to ensure these cars went fast and were capable of winning races. Then to give themselves an additional advantage Ford and Lotus enticed some the best in the world to drive them. Open wheel heroes such as Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart and Jackie Ickx all strapped into the Fords. Its light weight and agile handling meant these Formula One jocks and others won, and won often. And so the legend was created.

To the uninitiated the Mark I cars look like the poverty pack models. But to those who know the discreet yellow and green `Lotus' badges on the rear guards and the green stripe along the flanks are the giveaways.

When Ford introduced the restyled Mark II Cortina in 1967, the Lotus version also debuted. Mark II Lotus Cortinas are rare in Australia. "I estimate there are about fourteen", says David Fotheringham, the owner of the one featured here.

David's car is build-number 331 of 1967. It was imported by Geoghegans Sports Cars in 1971 from the UK, and David is the third owner in Australia. In all those years only 57,100 miles have been put on it.

The Cortina has not been restored in any way, however its iconic ermine white paint was given a re-spray sometime in the seventies and the engine enlarged. The front bumper has also been split, Mark I style. Nothing else has been touched and David intends to keep it that way.

"There's no need to make any changes. The car is in wonderful condition and I like the patina of its age." he observes.

Open the bonnet and you are immediately confronted with the double overhead cam shaft 1558 cc motor filling the engine bay. Out to the side are strapped two Weber DCOE 40s carbies. It all looks very efficient and effective. The power output is 140 BHP, propelling the car a top speed of over 100 mph.

This not a trailer queen car. "I take it on club runs about eight or nine times a year", David says. Not content with the Lotus, David also has 1967 GT Cortina and an unusual 1966 V4 Ford Corsair. So it's no surprise to know he is the President of the Hunter British Ford Club.

David explains his passion for smaller Fords. "My first car was a 1967 Cortina GT. I bought it in 1977 and sold it a few years later. Then in 1995 I had an opportunity to buy it again, but before I could close the deal the car was stolen and just disappeared. So I decide to buy a GT anyway. And that got me started".