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sierra If you guys think along the same lines as me, and I’m pretty sure you do, this story will blow your mind. It all started when a guy from Ipswich alerted the forumites of the esteemed as to the existence and imminent sale of a Ford Sierra. Not just any Sierra, but the virtually extinct entry level model. What began as a simple “ooh, look at that” quickly developed into one of the most emotionally rewarding internet forum threads you’ll ever read. Leap the jump to see how it all happened. Just to recap for those at the back, the Sierra was Ford’s large family car offering for the eighties, following on from the classical square-rigged Cortina with a new and controversially shaped-by-the-wind aesthetic. It’s easy to forget now, but on its launch in ’82 the Sierra caused quite a stir. The vast majority of them are long since recycled by now, survivors tend to be high-specification models like the fabled RS Cosworth, or low-mileage one-owner-from-new examples kept alive by the hopelessly tenacious or wilfully contrary. So this early, solid red 1.6 litre base model (you could get a 1.3 if you were really masochistic), distinguished by its “dangly” exterior mirrors and “why on Earth did Ford do that?” grey painted front grille panel, is a rare beast indeed. In fact, the entry level model was generally avoided when new, so it’s the kind of car which really has made it into 2016 on a wing and a prayer. This was a point that wasn’t lost on the majority of contributors on the Autoshite thread. There was a fair bit of quibbling about the sale price, which was hovering in the region of a thousand pounds. Of course, if looked at as a car, it’s worth nothing like near that amount. But if looked at in terms of social significance, rarity and total unrepeatableness, if treated as art, you could say it was priceless. Then there came discussion on what you might do with it if you did pony up the funds and buy it. Do you restore it and have the only immaculate base spec Sierra left in existence, or do you keep it as is, maintaining originality and emphasising the unbelievable fluke that the car has survived at all? So many questions. But the answers are all in the thread. I beseech you, take some time to read the thread all the way through. You will experience every single human emotion and feeling, from joy and desire, through to pain and hunger. Then, once you’re through and feeling drained yet nourished, go and join the brotherhood that is Autoshite, the second best car forum on the planet. (Top image taken from original Gumtree advert (no longer online). Mad props go out to the Autoshite collective)

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