Ford Granada1972 - 1994
The Ford Granada was a large executive car manufactured by Ford Europe at both its German factory in Cologne and its British factory in Dagenham from 1972 until 1976 when production switched entirely to Germany. From 1985–94 the Granada name was used in the UK only, for a model sold in other European markets as the Ford Scorpio.
The March 1972 released Granada succeeded the British Ford Zephyr, and the German P7-series as Ford's European executive car offering. At first, lower models in the range were called the Ford Consul, but from 1975 on they were all called Granadas. The car soon became popular for taxi, fleet and police usage. It was also converted into limousine and hearse versions by the British companies Coleman Milneand Woodall Nicholson. Traditional four-door limousines were offered (both long and short versions) alongside an unusual four-door "coupé limousine" (only 12 built), as well as hearses in either two- or four-door configurations.
Mechanically, the European Granada conformed to Ford convention, the initial range using the Ford Essex V4 unit in 2.0 L displacement, and the "Essex" V6 engine in 2.5 and 3.0 L capacities. German models employed a Ford Taunus V4 engine in 1.7 L displacement, or the 3.0L Essex V6, or, more commonly the "Cologne" V6 in 2.0, 2.3 or 2.6 L capacities. The V4 was later replaced by the Pinto unit. The car generally followed mechanical layout of its predecessors Ford Zephyr/Zodiac, utilizing a coil sprung independent rear end, although front McPherson struts were replaced by double wishbones, introduced 18 months earlier in smaller TC Cortina and Taunus. On the other hand the Granada – like Ford 17M/20M/26M – featured drum brakes at rear, as opposed to the Ford Zephyr/Zodiac rear disc brakes.
The cars were available as two- and four-door saloons, a five-door estate (Turnier) and two-door fastback coupé. The early (1972–73) coupé had slightly different sheet metal; a more pronounced coke bottle styling. In 1974 the coupé was revised, with more straight lines. The two-door-saloon was never sold or produced in the UK. A revised coupé was sold only in Ghia-trim in the UK; elsewhere in all trims with all engines available. This was the reverse of the situation with the TC Cortina and Taunus, where the British model had the "coke-bottle" styling.
In South Africa, the Granada Perana V8, built by Basil Green Motors, was available through Ford dealers with the 302 CID Windsor V8 engine, developing 255 PS (188 kW; 252 hp) 405 N·m (299 lb·ft) at 2600 rpm.
The square and straight-lined Granada '78 appeared in August 1977 and was produced until April 1985 following a mild facelift and attention to drivetrain NVH in 1982. It was a development of the previous car, the main differences being the "Cologne" V6 engine in 2.0 L, 2.3 L and 2.8 L forms replacing the older "Essex" unit (which had never been offered in the Cologne built Granadas), and the introduction of features such as air conditioning and, for the top price 2.8 litre versions, fuel-injection. In mainland Europe, a 1.7 L V4 was originally available. By the time of its introduction, UK Granada production had been quietly abandoned "for some time": UK market Granada IIs were imported from Germany. Internally within Ford, the "Cologne" 1.7, 2.0, 2.3 and 2.8 units were the last derivatives of the 'V-Taunus' range of engines.
The coupé was discontinued when the new model began production, although there was a 2-door saloon version in certain European markets. A relatively low number of vehicles were also produced with the Peugeot 504 / 505 four-cylinder diesel engine in 1.9, 2.1 and 2.5 litre capacities. Originally only available as four-door sedans (the later 2.5 also as an estate), most of these went to taxi operators and few survive.
As the range matured another two models were introduced. A sports based Granada was introduced as the Granada 2.8 Injection which had white alloy wheels and a black bootlid spoiler. This model borrowed the 2.8i "injected" engine from the Ghia model range. Towards the end of its production run, the introduction of the 2.0 and 2.3LX saloon and estate UK marketing packs provided versions with a slightly higher specification than the "base" L models.
A special Ford of Britain only marketing pack edition of the Ghia X model was later introduced as the "Ford Granada Ghia X Executive" which standardised luxury appointments such as the high grade Connolly Leather interior that had previously been an optional fitment. Further refinements such an electric sunroof, electric opening boot on saloons, electric seat adjustment, heated seats, trip computer and air conditioning set the Granada Ghia X above most other cost comparable executive cars available in the UK in the early eighties. There was also a special "Taxi" edition, available only in black, which included a foot-operated "panic button" in the drivers' footwell which would operate the alarm system. In addition to these two models the range was complemented by estate models which reflected the same appointment levels as the entire saloon range including the Ghia X, but not the Ghia X Executive model.
Ford subcontracted assembly to Hyundai Motor Company in South Korea for sales in that market, where it continued to be sold from October 1978 to 1986 when it gave way to the Hyundai Grandeur instead of smaller European Fords like the Sierra and Escort. Production ended in December 1985, after 4,743 had been built. The car originally received a 2.0 liter V6 engine with a 2-barrelSolex carburetor, but after 1980 the more economical 2 litre four-cylinder was also available. The Granada competed with theSaehan Rekord as well as the Peugeot 604, imported by Kia Motors. Chung Mong-pil, the eldest son of Hyundai's founder Chung Ju-yung, died in a car accident in a Granada.
Additionally, hearses were offered by outside conversion companies, as well as a series of four-door limousines built by Coleman Milne. These included the slightly stretched "Minster" 15 cm, and the 68 cm longer "Dorchester" and better equipped "Grosvenor". As of autumn 1982 the Dorchester was also available in an estate version with elongated rear doors, called the "Windsor".
In April 1985 the third-generation car arrived, which was essentially a rebadged Ford Scorpio, the Granada name being used in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland only, with the Scorpio badge (which covered the whole range in Continental Europe) being reserved for the top-range versions. The Mark III Granada was the first European volume production model to have anti-lock brakes fitted as standard across the range.
Engine options included the familiar SOHC Pinto engine, in either tax-barrier undercutting 1.8 L form, or a more powerful 2 litre version with fuel injection available. The Cologne V6 engines were carried over from the previous range in short-lived (and not much more powerful than the 2 L Pinto) 2.4 L, and 2.8 L (later 2.9 L) capacities. In 1991 A new range-topping vehicle was introduced, the Scorpio 24-valve. It featured a 2.9 L Cologne engine that had been extensively re-worked by Cosworth Engineering and featured quad camshafts and 24 valves, enough for 200 bhp (150 kW). According to Ford this gave a 0-60 mph time of 8.1 seconds and top speed of 140 mph (230 km/h).
This version of the Granada continued the "Ford family" styling concept from the previous versions; this time the car superficially resembled a larger version of the Cortina's successor, the Ford Sierra.
The Ford Granada Mk III was the last car to car to bear the iconic Granada badge in the UK & Ireland being replaced in 1994 with the Pan-European Scorpio. The Scorpio shared its platform doors and roof with the Mk III Granada and these elements of the cars design were unremarkable. The styling of the nose and tail sections suffered from the application of the Ford Ovoid design school being used across the Ford range in the 1990s. On the Scorpio this appeared as a large gaping mouth, ‘bug’ eyed headlights and a bulbous boot. A 1998 redesign did nothing to save it from being axed the same year with total European sales only 95,587 units.
Ford Europe had traditionally achieved success with the policy of minimal investment in an old model to launch an exciting, faster and better equipped new model. With the Scorpio (and the 1991 Escort) Ford seemed to get the investment balance wrong, which when allied to the unpopular styling caused their long term exit from this market segment in Europe.
High end Ford ownership in Europe meant being able to afford performance and equipment levels which were otherwise the preserve of premium brand vehicles at a far higher price. With the Scorpio Ford seemed to neglect this concept. Evidence of this can be seen when comparing the specification of a 1984 Ford Granada 2.8i Ghia X Executive designed in the 1970s and a Scorpio Ultima designed in the 1990s; the additional equipment for that decade-long gap is ABS, an airbag, and a CD player.
It should be acknowledged that most volume manufactures have, in common with Ford, failed to maintain a position in the executive car sector in Europe. With the Opel/Vauxhall Omega,Citroën XM, Peugeot 607 all being axed and not replaced. One cause of this is the increasing accessibility of premium BMW and Mercedes brands. As consumers become more aspirational is may be seen as more desirable to have even a lesser equipped luxury car than a well equipped volume car.
|1971 Ford Granada|
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