Some more rare cars hit Autocade

Tim Cottingham of the Aston Martin Heritage Trust kindly gave me permission to use one of his photographs on Autocade, for a very rare Aston. The 1972 Vantage was a six-cylinder model, of which only 70 were made. The Autocade entry gives a credit to Tim, and we can begin tracing the lineage of some of the old DB models.
   That, and several other rare cars for which there’s very little information online, went on last week.


Aston Martin Vantage. 1972–3 (prod. 70). 2-door saloon. F/R, 3995 cm³ (6 cyl. DOHC). Last of the six-cylinder DBs till DB7 débuted in the 1990s, and post-David Brown (released when Aston Martin was under Company Developments’ ownership). Odd amalgam of the new two-headlamp front end and the outgoing DBS, complete with wire wheels. Engine essentially identical to that of DB5 in Vantage tune. Despite the name, less powerful than the other Aston Martin on offer at the time, the V8, and was, in fact, the entry-level model in the range at the time. Very rare.


BMW 1804/BMW 2004. 1973–4 (prod. 1,404). 4-door saloon. F/R, 1767, 1990 cm³ (4 cyl. OHC). Successor to Glas 1700-based SA saloons, but with a more modern design, styled again by Frua. Essentially a major facelift done for budgetary reasons, with the BMW corporate grille and naming to bring the cars into line with the 1602 and 2002 (the 4 was for four doors, in this case). Improved trim and dashboard. Rear lights from the BMW 5er-Reihe, which later succeeded the range in South Africa.


Ford Meteor (GA/GB). 1981–5 (prod. unknown). 4-door sedan. F/F, 1490 cm³ (4 cyl. OHC). Australian name for booted first-generation Ford Laser, with slightly different grille, which could be found on some Japanese-market Mazda Familias. Intended as a temporary Cortina replacement before the Ford Telstar (GC) was launched. Never really filled the niche as two 1·5-litre engine options were offered (standard and twin carburettor), rather than the two-litre starting point of the Australian Cortina. Identical to Laser mechanically.


Ranger B. 1972–6 (prod. unknown). 2- and 4-door saloon, 2-door coupé. F/R, 1698, 1897 cm³ (4 cyl. CIH), 2490, 2784 cm³ (6 cyl. CIH). GM Continental continues its exercise in building Opel Rekords, this time updated to the D model. Small engine (1·7) added, but with the exception of the quad round headlamps (shared with South African Chevrolet 3800 and 4100), a facsimile of the Opel. Production ended in 1976, as tariffs ended within the EEC, and there was no point maintaining a separate marque.

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