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The first-gen Fiesta gets the treatment, and not a round headlamp in sight – here are two Mk1 Fiesta project ideas courtesy of Simon Coulson.

Dear Classic Ford magazine, I am writing to complain about the increasing occurrence of wrong-wheel-drive cars in your magazine…” (insert rest of complaint here).

Alternatively, take a look at the cars on this page and tell us you wouldn’t like at least one in the garage to compliment your more traditional classic Ford. They’ve been around long enough to be considered officially classic (even the youngest example is 25 years old) and they shared showroom space with the more accepted Escort, so surely they deserve a place here, too?

mk1 fiesta project

The first Fiesta seen before you follows the simple formula of low suspension and cool rims — the same tricks that work so well on our favourite cars in this very mag every month. We’ve deliberately avoided building a Supersport or XR2 replica (look — square lights!) and based our car on the lesser-loved S model. If you can’t find one for sale, don’t worry — a good signmaker should be able to knock some stripes up for you. Wheels are good ol’ RS four-spokes albeit in rwd fitment — your wheel bearings might be unhappy but it’ll look great! Other than that it’s all pretty much factory aside from performing a thorough job of blacking all the chrome and losing the grille badge in favour of some individual F O R D lettering placed neatly in the corner… it’s all in the details. Keep the engine small and simple — a 1.1 or 1.3 on bike carbs should be entertaining without hurting the wallet every time you take it out.

Our second MkI shares some of the style but takes a racier approach, the aim being to put together a car that’ll give you maximum thrills on the track without having to pay Escort prices. In the interests of lightness the bumpers have been chucked in the bin along with everything inside. where you’ll now find race seats, harnesses and a hefty cage for strength, safety and looks. The arches have been extended to cover the seriously deep-dish rims pushed up inside them by the track-tweaked suspension. What’s under the bonnet will be dictated by how much you want to spend and what the race regulations allow. Get to it!

Words and illustrations Simon Coulson

Click here for more of Simon’s project ideas

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