1996 Ford Escort RS Cosworth

Trade Classics > Auctions > Ford > 1996 Ford Escort RS Cosworth
Auction closed for price: £43,000.00
Auction ID
Reserve Met - ON SALE
Posted on
4th of January 2018 at 1:49 PM
Highest Bidder


    Escort RS
    5 speed manual
    Reg. Date
    MOTs & Service Book
    Interior Colour
    Interior Trim
    Chassis #
    Engine #
    Matching #s
    Engine Rebuild
    MOT Exempt
    Road Tax Exempt
    HPi Clear
    Tyre Tread
    Tyre Brand
    Pirelli & Continental
    Tyre Age
    Security Sys
    # of Keys
    Master Key
    CO2 (g/km)
    LHD or RHD
    Vehicle Visited
    Sale Type
    Since 2004
    Key Feature
    Cosworth Engine
    19227 times


*** UPDATE: This car has now been sold for £45,580 all inclusive ***

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The 90’s; we miss the 90’s don’t we. Watching the World Rally Championship or the British Touring Cars felt very special. Ogle at the spoiler and splitter clad fire breathing beasts on Sunday, rooting for the marque your family car emanated from.

And on Monday? Admire the road going version of Sunday’s televisual feast from the bus; on the way to school.

‘Road going version’ this may be, but taken to the extreme. Welcome the legend that is now the Escort RS Cosworth, or ‘Cossie’. It doesn’t matter if you are five or fifty five, you still want one.

It was born in an era where manufacturers lived by the rule ‘race on Sunday, sell on Monday’ and were not bound so strictly by emissions and pedestrian crash safety.

Turbo charged, in an obvious ‘wait, here comes the boost’ manner. Whale tail. Aggressive bumpers. Four wheel drive. Mechanical. Intensely rare. Tuneable. Recaro seats. Raw, unhinged and recognisable anywhere in the world as a performance icon. And thus it deserves to be put into perspective in today’s world, not with statistics.

Buy it and park it next to a Prius in the supermarket car park, or even an Ecoboost Focus; feel proud.



We’re really excited to be offering up for auction this very special and rare 1996 Ford Escort RS Cosworth owned by John Cook from Southend-on-Sea.

John is the seller and second owner for the last 13 years and he’s covered just 3k miles in that time.

Take a look at the video here to meet John, learn about what he loves about the car and why he’s selling it.

We visited the car on the 4th of February and were immediately wowed by it. It’s a credit to John and in superb condition, always garaged and only covered a total of just over 30k miles since its registration in May 1996 (supported by MOTs from 1999).

The car is finished in metallic black and black leather wrapped over stunning and supportive Recaro seats.

We think you’ll love this car and bidding will be energetic. If you have any question then write it below and one of our team, or John, will answer for you.



The exterior of the car is in excellent condition and really looks amazing in the metallic black.

Take a look at our video here to see a close up walk around the car.

Original five spoke alloys are fitted and are in excellent original condition – never curbed.  There is a small scratched area on the NSR outer edge (see pic). An unused space saver tyre and tool kit is present in the boot.

The bodywork is in excellent condition with no parking dents and the panels all look like factory fit on visual inspection. The doors and bonnet all shut nicely as expected. There are small traces (we mean very small) of bubbling on the wheel arches (see images).

The paint is in excellent condition and we didn’t notice any visible signs of colour difference (in direct sunlight) or any difference in factory orange peel across the panels.

John has had minor stone chips blown in on the front of the bonnet at some point during his ownership (see picture of paint depth gauge).

There is a small chip in the middle of the OS driver’s door and some small chips on the leading edge of the bonnet. There is also a small masking line on the lower part of the inside ‘B’ posts indicating some paint repair in the distant past.

In summary, we are being fastidious in our write up, however, the paint really does look in excellent condition for a 21 year old car and would look even better with a full polish / wax.

No issues noticed.



The interior is in excellent original condition with unmarked supple leather on stunning Recaro seats.

Seats and Carpets
All seats are in original condition with wear in line with the 30k miles. Even the front seat bolsters show virtually no signs of wear, as shown in the photos, and the leather is soft and supple.

Carpets are original and show little sign of wear.

All original gauges and no aftermarket additions have been made. There is no waxy coating on the dash, i.e. it’s in its original matt state.

Steering Wheel / Gear Stick
Steering wheel shows little signs of wear, however, the gear stick gaiter does need to be refurbished as the creases have lost the black colour (see pictures).  Also, importantly, John has the original gear stick and will include it in the sale.



We took the car out for a short test drive (4 miles / max 50mph) and observed no issues. It performed faultlessly and felt every bit worthy of the low mileage it’s covered since new.

The video here shows a cold start and short run on an uneven road.

Engine and Gearbox
The car starts first time from cold with no visible signs of smoke and idles as expected. No issues with gear selection from cold in any gear. Turbo boost pressure increased as expected during acceleration and the car felt quick / responsive.  The exhaust tailpipe could do with some attention as shows signs of mild corrosion.  The engine number is inaccessible for photos and we have not seen it ourselves, however, John has confirmed he has personally checked the number when the car was previously up on the ramp and it matches the log book.

Suspension and Brakes
On the drive there were no audible signs of any steering or suspension wear, in fact there were no signs of any rattles, knocks or squeaks. John reports braking was smooth with no signs of juddering or unevenness.

The Drive
Gear selection was smooth and no issues with the clutch and drove as expected.

John reports all electrics work as expected. John has fitted an aftermarket and period correct CD player that is not powering up. The new owner may wish to either fix or replace with the blanking plate.

John also reports the air conditioning is cold and works as expected.



This is a rare and desirable two owner car that has covered on average just 1,500 miles a year, always garaged and looked after by the same owner for the last 13 years; gold dust.

There are 8 service book stamps from 1997 with the last one being 2007 (3 years into John’s ownership). All MOTs are present with the exception of 2002.

John has all the original keys and the importantly the master keys are present too.

Mileage recorded on HPI check as follows – also, see all previous MOTs (except 2002) in the images below.

30,264 miles recorded on 21 Sep 2017
30,246 miles recorded on 19 Oct 2016
30,209 miles recorded on 9 Sep 2015
30,121 miles recorded on 12 Aug 2014
29,926 miles recorded on 13 Aug 2013
29,787 miles recorded on 14 Aug 2012
29,532 miles recorded on 8 Aug 2011
29,320 miles recorded on 9 Aug 2010
28,432 miles recorded on 7 Aug 2009
28,257 miles recorded on 8 Aug 2008
27,920 miles recorded on 31 Jul 2007
27,756 miles recorded on 2 Aug 2006
16,941 miles recorded on 29 Aug 2000
11,684 miles recorded on 9 Dec 1999
8,949 miles recorded on 27 Aug 1999
6,868 miles recorded on 3 Jun 1999



Fresh to market cars don’t come around like this one everyday; they really don’t.

As you can probably tell we are in love with this car and its provenance.

We are really excited about this commission, especially after this same spec model sold back in November at auction for a whopping £91k although it was of museum standard.

The market is moving quickly for rare and desirable ‘Fast Fords’ and we have set a very realistic reserve with John as he needs to liquidate the money to pay for some home alterations.

On a final note, we’ll all be looking back at the sale of this car in a few years and wishing we’d bought it. Well except for the lucky owner that will probably make more money than investing in Bitcoin right now!



Want to see this car like you’d see it in real life, in eye popping 3D 4K virtual reality?

Well you can as we are the only classic car auction house to film our high value cars in glorious VR.

There are two ways to watch:

3D – Mobile Phone
Experience glorious 3D by putting your phone into a VR headset & then click on the text links below:

– Walk around – tap here.
– Bodywork – tap here.
– Engine Bay – tap here.
– Interior – tap here.

The 3D VR video will then open in your YouTube app – simply select the goggles button and you’re all set.

2D – Laptop / Desktop
Click on the videos below to view in 2D and pan around using your mouse.Top Tip: select a higher resolution in video settings (up to 8k) to see pin sharp quality  – more instructions here.


UsernameBid AmountDate MadeWinner
radders£43,000.0021-Feb-2018 20:29:33Yes
Bertie£42,500.0021-Feb-2018 19:55:26 
derekconsidine£42,000.0021-Feb-2018 19:24:36 
radders£41,000.0021-Feb-2018 19:23:52 
derekconsidine£40,000.0021-Feb-2018 19:22:01 
radders£39,000.0021-Feb-2018 19:21:11 
derekconsidine£38,000.0021-Feb-2018 19:14:44 
radders£37,000.0021-Feb-2018 19:13:41 
derekconsidine£36,500.0021-Feb-2018 19:10:06 
radders£36,000.0021-Feb-2018 18:32:33 
derekconsidine£35,000.0021-Feb-2018 16:20:43 
Bertie£34,000.0021-Feb-2018 15:34:21 
derekconsidine£33,000.0021-Feb-2018 13:25:26 
mrsmith80£32,000.0020-Feb-2018 19:41:48 
radders£30,000.0015-Feb-2018 12:54:29 


Got a question or comment?

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Adam - Trade Classics

Great…. this is in the £40k+ mark now… still mega cheap for this 2 owner and rare car…!

Kulraj Salh

They don’t make these anymore, and you don’t find many in this condition, so will be a great buy for the winning bidder!

Kulraj Salh

Reserve now met, it will be selling tonight to the highest bidder, good luck to those bidding tonight.

Adam - Trade Classics

Com’on everyone… over 9,000 view of this auction in the last week… who’s got a burning question for John… or perhaps an RS expert? 🙂

Gary Turner
Gary Turner

Low volume Ford pocket rocket. So much to like with this example

Adam - Trade Classics

Agree Gary – we had so much interest in this car with over 7k views. Also lots of people saw the auction at the London Classic Car Show and they love ‘Fast Fords’… smart place to put your money at the moment I think.

Adam - Trade Classics

Excited to have consigned such an awesome car… If you have any questions then just type them here and we’ll ask John to answer…