Here is the second part of my report on Cars in the Park 2012, featuring more cars that have all but disappeared from our roads:
1. Ford Fairmont GT (CAR Road Test: January 1972)
This has been considered one of the most dangerous cars ever marketed in this country. It was fitted with the same 351 cubic inch (5,7 litre) engine as the contemporary Farilane 500, and had no safety features at all except brakes. It was available as a manual, which must have been undrivable, and an automatic, which was the version tested by CAR.
2. Ford Granada V8 Coupé (CAR Road Test: January 1973- sedan model)
In the late 1960s, Ford dealer Basil Green saw a gap in the local market. He fitted larger engines to certain Ford models than they came with as standard equipment, and gave them the Perana name. The first model he introduced was the Cortina Mark 2 Perana, fitted with a 3,0 litre V6 engine, rather than the 1,6 litre engine it came with originally. This was followed by the legendary Carpi Perana, which had the 5,0 litre engine from the Fairlane V8. This same engine was fitted to the Granada V8, which was available as a sedan and a coupé. The Granada V8 received full recognition as a Ford model.
3. Holden HR Special (CAR Road Test: October 1966)
The HR was the facelifted version of the Holden HD, introduced in 1965. Besides major styling improvements, the HR introduced a 186 cubic inch (3,0 litre engine), which became a legend in Australia, but was replaced after a year by a Chevrolet engine of 194 cubic inch (3,2 litre) because of local content requirements. In 1968, a luxury Premier version, still fitted with the 186 engine, was introduced to South Africa, but a few months before then, the HR’s successor, the HK, was introduced in Australia. This model range reached South Africa before the end of that year.
4. Mazda 1300 (CAR Road Test: February 1971)
Mazda entered the South African passenger car market in 1970 with the 1200. However, the 1300 was introduced a mere four months later, and almost immediately replaced the 1200. A very popular version based on this model range was the F 1000 pick-up, which I remember very well, because we had one in our family for several years. The car in this picture is the facelifted version, introduced in 1973.
5. Mercedes-Benz 230 E (CAR Road Test: March 1982)
If I were to choose a classic to restore, this would be my first choice, especially with this engine and an automatic gearbox. In fact, the car featured here, was for sale, but I was not able to do anything about it. The W 123, as this model range was code-named, was very popular, and except for the introdction of a new range of engines in 1981, it was one of the few model ranges that went through a long production cycle without a major facelift. That proves how well this design stood the test of time.
6. Opel Kadett 1,3 GLS (CAR Road Test: May 1980)
After offering the South African public several unsuccessful, and archaic, entry-level cars, General Motors finally got their act together in 1980 and did what had to be done. They introduced the Opel Kadett under exactly the same name as it carried in its home country and imported its engines from Germany. The disadvantage was that it could not be made in the same numbers as the VW Golf and the Mazda 323, even though it set the standard in its class in many ways. There was another disadvantage: except for the five-door hatchback and the station wagon, there was a four-door version. This, the car featured in this photograph, was identical to the hatchback, but its boot lid was smaller, and hinged below the rear window. Needless to say, this option was not popular, and it was soon discontinued.
7. Peugeot 504 TI (CAR Road Test: August 1973)
In the ’60s and ’70s, Peugeot built up an enviable reputation for manufaturing reliable and durable cars. The 504 TI was the first Peugeot to be fitted with fuel injection and came with a sunroof as standard equipment. The model featuerd here is one of the last to be built, because twin headlamps were introduced towards the end of the TI’s production cycle. It was replaced in 1980 by the 505 STI, was was less successful. However, the 504 soldiered on after receiving a major facelift.
8. Renualt 10 1300 (CAR Road Test: August 1970)
This was a historical car for Renault. It was the last Renault ever to feature a rear engine, and it was replaced by the front-engined 12 towards the end of 1970. The 1300 engine had a very short production cycle in South Africa, because it was only introduced around the middle of 1970.
9. Toyota Corona 1900 Mark 2 (CAR Road Test December 1969 and August 1970)
This was one of three Toyotas to be introduced to South Africa in 1969. Toyota South Africa decided against the six-cylinder Crown because the company acquired the Rambler franchise early in 1969, so the Mark 2 became the flagship of the local Toyota range. The range was extended by the introduction of a ¾ ton bakkie in 1970 and a model with an automatic transmission the following year. In 1971, it was given two facelifts, and the car featured here, is one of the last models.
10. Toyota HiLux (CAR Road Test: June 1971- 1600 model)
This was the first generation of the most popular vehicle ever produced in this country. This particular model was manufactured in 1970, and had the same 1,5 lite engine fitted to the contemporary Hi-Ace. The following year, a 1,6 litre model was introduced. I remember the 1600 very well, because two close relatives who were farmers at the time, used them on the farm. This first generation was relaced in 1973.
Tags: 1971 Toyota Hilux, 3 GLS, Cars in the park, Ford Fairmont GT, Ford Granada V8 coupe, Holden HR, Mazda 1300, Mercedes-Benz 230E w123, Opel Kadett 1, Peugeot 504 Ti, Renault 10 1300, Toyota Corona 1900 Mark 2