The Mark I Escorts became successful as a rally car, and they eventually went on to become one of the most successful rally cars of all time. The Ford works team was practically unbeatable in the late 1960s/early 1970s, and arguably the Escort's greatest victory was in the 1970 London to Mexico World Cup Rally, driven by Finnish legend Hannu Mikkola and Swedish co-driver Gunnar Palm.
Built to celebrate Ford’s win in the gruelling 16,000 mile London to Mexico Rally of 1970, the Mexico was an instant sales hit. Buyers loved its wide-wheeled stance, bold optional graphics and eager performance. Although the 1.6-litre ‘Kent’ engine produced only 86 bhp, and could trace its roots back to 1959, it was reliable and responsive. The Mexico also got the stronger bodyshell from the more expensive RS models, which aided its sporty, rear-wheel-drive character.
In the days before the hot hatch, keen drivers on a budget lusted after one model – the Escort Mexico.
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