Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Wide-arch Crusader

Words & photos: Daniel Bevis

Paul Whisker's mkV Cortina estate is an exercise in measured aggression. It also adds grist to the 'everything has potential' mill - ten years ago, would you have seen yourself lusting after a workaday Cortina wagon? Or would you have seen it more as a family grocery-getter; an oversized statement of middle-age, mortgages, sensible trousers and eating your greens?

This Cortina transcends all of that nine-to-fiveism to create something really quite outlandish. The arches, meticulously hand-crafted from steel, echo those of the Cortina's rallying Escort stablemates. Their muscular aesthetic was actually derived from necessity (well, as far as logic dictates in the situation); having bought the super-wide steel wheels, pumping up the arches was the only way to get them to fit. Makes sense, really.
Paul was keen to retain everyday usability, which required a little lateral thinking when it came to the chassis setup and custom bodywork - it's not garish, it still has four opening doors, it all follows the original lines of the car. It's just a lot lower, and a lot wider.

As is so often the case with these builds, it's the details that make all the difference. The GT40-esque Crusader side-stripes, the caricaturised negative camber at the front, the smoked headlights - it all coalesces to create something surprisingly desirable. It's like the Cortina estate your mum had, only... angrier.

Spotted at the 2013 Retro Show - more photos here


Paul Whisker said...

Thank you Daniel Bevis, your write up it sounds like you are as enthusiastic as I am for this project. You've described it perfectly.

juice said...

You're welcome! Have you got a feature lined up for it anywhere?