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 ON THE ROAD

Big stars of British roads made Fifties debut

They were big cars in every sense of the word. The Ford Zephyr and Zodiac were classic giants of the British roads, stylish for their time, roomy, comfortable, and high on performance.
They were the Z-cars of the TV series of that name. And they were classics in a motoring age which threw up more than its fair share of worthy competitors for that title.
The Zephyr Six made its first appearance alongside the new look Consul at the 1950 Motor Show. By 1954 the Zodiac had appeared.
Two years later bigger Mark 111 versions came onto the roads.
From the start the cars were a hit with motorists, offering good value for money as well as safe, comfortable motoring. By 1961 they had achieved sales of one million.
For their time the Fords were both stylish and very well equipped with loop pile carpets, ash trays, arm rests, cigar lighter, electric screen washers and two speed wipers among their equipment.
A front bench seat could easily take three people without the driver feeling cramped and overcrowded. The gear change was mounted on the steering column.
Although big cars both models were fun to drive, the Zodiac becoming the first 100mph car to be produced by Ford. The Zephyr was to become a TV star in its own right during the Sixties and Seventies, being used by the BBC for its hugely popular Z-Cars series, many episodes of which were written by Hull playwright Alan Plater.

Production of the Mk IV Zephyr / Zodiac ended in 1972 when it was replaced by the new Consul / Granada.

Written by The Editor - 03/10/2004 18:31:21

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