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Ford Zephyr

 


 


The Ford Zephyr was a car manufactured by the Ford Motor Company in the United Kingdom. Between 1950 and 1972, it was sold as a more powerful six-cylinder saloon to complement the four-cylinder Ford Consul: from 1962 the Zephyr itself was offered in both four- and six-cylinder versions.

 

The Zephyr and its luxury variant, the Ford Zodiac which appeared in 1954, were the largest passenger cars in the British Ford range from 1950 till they were replaced in 1972 by a larger Ford Consul and Granada. 


 

Ford Zephyr 4 Mark III
Production 1962-1966
106,810 made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate (conversion)
Engine 1,703 cc (104 cu in) straight-4
Wheelbase 107 in (2,718 mm)
Length 180.75 in (4,591 mm)
(saloon & estate)
Width 69.25 in (1,759 mm)
Height 57.25 in (1,454 mm) (saloon)
57.75 in (1,467 mm) (estate)
Curb weight 2,576 lb (1,168 kg) (Saloon)
2,912 lb (1,321 kg) (estate)
Related Ford Zephyr 6 Mark III
Designer Roy Brown
Ford Zephyr 6 Mark III


Production 1962-1966
105,256 made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate (conversion)
Engine 2,553 cc (156 cu in) straight-6(a small block Ford was available in The Australian Market)

 
Ford Zephyr
Vintage car at the Wirral Bus & Tram Show - DSC03326.JPG
Ford Zephyr Mark II Saloon
Manufacturer Ford of Britain
Production 1950–1972
Assembly Dagenham
Australia New Zealand South Africa
Predecessor Ford Pilot
Successor Ford Consul
Ford Granada
Class Full-size
Ford Zephyr Six
Production 1951-1956
148,629 saloons and 4048 convertibles made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate (conversion)
2-door convertible (conversion)
Engine 2,262 cc (138 cu in) straight-6 ohv
Wheelbase 107 in (2,718 mm)
Length 172 in (4,369 mm)
Width 64 in (1,626 mm)
Height 60 in (1,524 mm)
Curb weight 2,464 lb (1,118 kg)
Related Ford Consul I

 
  The Mark I Ford Consul and Zephyr models were first displayed at the Earl's Court motor show in 1950. They were the first to use in mass production the MacPherson Strut independent front suspension which is still widely used today. Production began with the Consul on January 1, 1951.

The Mark I model ran until 1956. From April 1956 the Mark II Consul, Zephyr and Zodiac went on sale and were known as the Three Graces. The Mark II range was a big seller and finished its run in 1962 when from April that year the Mark III Zephyr 4, Zephyr 6 and Zodiac went on sale; the Consul name was dropped, the car's place in the Ford UK line-up being filled by the first four-cylinder Ford Zephyr.

While the Mark II Zephyr and Zodiacs had shared the same body (the Consul had shorter front guards and bulkhead), the new Zodiac and Zephyrs launched in 1962 shared few body panels. With the Mark III, Ford finally sorted out problems that had beset previous models (Mark I axles and Mark II gearboxes were particular weaknesses) and the Mark III proved to be the most popular and durable of the range (it is said that possibly no other UK-based car had undergone as much pre-production testing).

The model sold at a rate equal to or better than the Mark II both in the UK and overseas, but was in production for a shorter time. During the last months of production, an up-market Executive version was added to the Mark III range, and examples of these are today highly sought after. The Mk III range was discontinued in January 1966 (many believe prematurely given the cars' success) and the completely new Zephyr / Zodiac Mark IV range was released in April 1966.

This car was somewhat ahead of its time with a design that anticipated the later Consul/Granada range with V-engines and independent rear suspension, but the research and development of the model was very rushed and this unfortunately reflected in its durability.


  Although the Ford Zephyr never saw American production, a very limited amount were imported into the US and the name itself has appeared on other American Ford-related cars.

The first use of the Zephyr moniker was in 1936 with the Lincoln-Zephyr a smaller companion to the full sized Lincoln sedan sold at the time, followed in the early 1980s with the Mercury Zephyr, an upscale version of the Ford Fairmont, and the Lincoln Zephyr was resurrected began its second production run in 2006 with the name changed to the Lincoln MKZ.




Ford Zephyr Zodiac
Ford Zephyr Zodiac

Production 1954-1956
22,634 made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate (conversion)
Engine 2,262 cc (138 cu in) straight-6
Ford Zephyr Mark II

Ford Zephyr Mark II Saloon
Production 1956-1962
294,506 (including the Zodiac Mark II) and 6911 Convertibles made.
Body style 4-door saloon ("sedan" in Australia)
5-door station wagon (Australia)
2-door coupe utility (Australia)
5-door estate (conversion)
2-door convertible (conversion)
Engine 2,553 cc (156 cu in) straight-6 ohv
Wheelbase 107 in (2,718 mm)
Length 178.5 in (4,534 mm)
Width 67 in (1,702 mm)
Curb weight 2,576 lb (1,168 kg)
Related Ford Consul II
Ford Zodiac Mark II
Ford Zodiac Mark II
Production 1956-1962
294,506 (including the Zodiac Mark II) and 6911 Convertibles made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate (conversion)
2-door convertible (conversion)
Engine 2,553 cc (156 cu in) straight-6

Ford Zephyr Mark IV
Production 1966-1972
102,417 made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate (conversion)
Engine 1,996 cc (122 cu in) V4
2,495 cc (152 cu in) V6
Wheelbase 115 in (2,921 mm)
Length 185 in (4,699 mm)
Width 71.25 in (1,810 mm)
Height 58.5 in (1,486 mm)
Curb weight 2,716 lb (1,232 kg) (Zephyr 4)
2,884 lb (1,308 kg) (Zephyr 6)
Ford Zodiac Mark III
Quad lamps for Zodiac Mark III
Production 1962-1966
77,323 made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate (conversion)
Engine 2,553 cc (156 cu in) straight-6
Wheelbase 107 in (2,718 mm)
Length 182.75 in (4,642 mm)
Width 69 in (1,753 mm)
Height 56.75 in (1,441 mm)
Curb weight 2,828 lb (1,283 kg)

Ford Zodiac Mark IV
Production 1966-1972
48,846 made.
Body style 4-door saloon
5-door estate car (conversion)
Engine 2,994 cc (183 cu in) V6

 
  The first of the Zephyr range was a lengthened version of the four-cylinder 1,508 cc (92 cu in) Consul, with a 2,262 cc (138 cu in) six-cylinder engine producing 68 bhp (51 kW). Like the Consul, the Zephyr came with a three speed gear box, controlled using a column mounted lever.

The front suspension design, based on that first seen in the Ford Vedette, employed what would later come to be known as MacPherson struts while a more conventional configuration for the rear suspension used a live axle with half-elliptic springs. The car could reach just over 80 mph (130 km/h) and 23 mpg.




The Ford Zephyr Six was available with 4-door saloon, estate and 2-door convertible bodies. The convertible version was made by Carbodies and had a power-operated hood; the estate car was by Abbotts of Farnham and was sold as the Farnham.

The Consul and Zephyr were assembled at Ford New Zealand's Seaview factory in Lower Hutt from CKD kits. The large Fords competed with the also locally built Vauxhall Wyvern and Velox and, later the Australian Holden. When the newly crowned Queen Elizabeth II visited New Zealand as part of a Commonwealth tour in the early 1950s, she was pictured watching Zephyrs being built at the local Ford plant.


The car was a success not only in the market place but also in competition. In 1953 a Ford Zephyr Six driven by Maurice Gatsonides won the Monte Carlo rally, pushing a Jaguar Mark VII into second place in the process. Two years later a Ford Zephyr Six driven by Vic Preston with D P Marwaha achieved an outright win in the East African Safari Rally


  In 1956 the Consul, Zephyr and Zodiac were all restyled to a new family look. The 6-cylinder cars' engines were enlarged to 2,553 cc (156 cu in), with power output correspondingly raised to 86 bhp (64 kW). The wheelbase was increased by 3 inches (76 mm) to 107 inches (2,700 mm) and the width increased to 69 inches (1,800 mm). The weight distribution and turning circle were also improved. Top speed increased to 88 mph (142 km/h) and the fuel consumption was also improved at 28 mpg (10 L/100 km; 23 mpg.

 

The Zodiac and Zephyr were also offered in two body styles these being the "Highline" and "Lowline", depending on the year of manufacture  the difference being 1.75 in (44 mm) being cut from the height of the roof panel. The "Highline" variant featured a hemispherical instrument cluster, whereas the "Lowline" had a more rectangular panel.


As well as a 3-speed manual gearbox there was an optional overdrive and from 1956 (1959 in Australia) a Borg Warner DG automatic transmission. At first drum brakes were fitted all round (with a larger lining area of 147 sq in/950 cm2) but front discs became optional in 1960 and standard from mid 1961 (in Australia only 4-wheel drum brakes were available; some dealers fitted servo-assistance from 1961).

A two-door convertible version was offered with power-operated hood. Owing to the structural weaknesses inherent in the construction of convertibles very few convertibles are known to survive: probably only 20-25 examples.


   



          
 

 http://www.classicmotor.co.uk/zephyr.htm  
 http://www.pioneer-automobiles.co.uk/index.html  
 http://www.motorpix.com/pix/1834921  







 
 

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