Zakspeed Ford Capri Turbo Made Mustangs Look Cutesy [w/video]
There’s no doubting America’s affinity for the Ford Mustang. Ford’s bread and butter pony car has seen bouts in NASCAR, enjoyed plenty of silver screen adoration, and the reverence of classic car collectors nationwide. But on the other side of the Atlantic, Ford achieved that same level of success...with the Capri. And this is the model to rule them all – the Zakspeed Ford Capri Turbo. The Zakspeed Capri was the simple result of Ford wanting to go racing again. In the wake of the ‘70s fuel crisis, Ford closed down its Cologne, Germany, motorsport operation, but by the late ‘70s the Blue Oval was ready to hit the track again with its signature European sports car, the Capri. RELATED: Sneak a peek at the all-new 2015 Ford F-150 XLT
So instead of developing the new Capri in-house, the German privateer outfit Zakspeed picked up the challenge. As per the FIA’s Group 5 rules, the race cars would need to be production models with unchanged body lines above the wheel arches and production-derived suspension. Beyond that the Zakspeed Capri was chopped, gutted, trimmed, tucked, vented and slammed into the winged beast you see in front of you.
Zakspeed fitted its Ford Capri with a turbocharged Cosworth BDA four-cylinder, cranked it up to output around 380 horsepower (later up to 600 horsepower), and went racing in the 1978 Deutsche Rennsport Meisterschaft (DRM).
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It did quite well. In its first season, the Capri stormed away with a win and four poles, followed by a Division 2 clinch in ’79, a slew of wins in ’80, and the overall championship in 1981. It doesn’t hurt that it looks meaner than all hell.
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