Jim Clark Lotus Cortina set for £200k sale

| 23 Nov 2018
Jim Clark Lotus Cortina set for £200k sale

Fancy owning a super-rare Ford Lotus Cortina raced by a host of motorsport legends? Well here’s your chance.

PHK 614D is one of just three Group 5 works cars built by Lotus for the 1966 Saloon Car Championship. And, as if that wasn’t reason enough to covet it, it was driven in that competition by none other than Jim Clark, Graham Hill, Sir John Whitmore, Peter Arundell and Jacky Ickx.

Now it’s going under the hammer at Silverstone Auctions’ Autosport International Sale – with a hefty estimate of £180,000 to £200,000.

Jim Clark Lotus Cortina set for £200k sale
The car was raced by several top drivers, including Jim Clark, Graham Hill and Jacky Ickx

Whatever it ends up selling for in January, it’s already enjoyed quite the life.

Built in March 1966, it was promptly put to work with Clark – by then a two-time Formula 1 World Champion – who drove it at Oulton Park, though bad weather meant running was limited.

Just a week later, it competed at Snetterton, where Arundell, another Formula 1 driver, took it to a second-in-class finish in the Archie Scott Brown Memorial Trophy.

Over the next month, the Cortina would be fielded at both Goodwood and Silverstone, with Arundell and then Ickx behind the wheel – both scoring further second-in-class finishes.

Come May of 1966, the Cortina was on spare-car duty at Crystal Palace, before racing outfit BRM fitted it with fuel injection in June.

That upgrade clearly worked: Whitmore steered the Cortina at Brands Hatch in July ’66 and, as England were winning the World Cup, he won his class.

Jim Clark Lotus Cortina set for £200k sale
Jim Clark scored a first place at Brands Hatch in Team Lotus’ sister car, PHK 615D

Brands Hatch would also be the venue for the Guards International meeting in August of 1966, where Arundell again sat at the helm of the Lotus, taking third overall and second in class; the race was won by another Team Lotus car, PHK 615D – with Clark driving.

Arundell would go on to field this machine again at Oulton Park and Brands Hatch that year, scoring enough points to secure third place overall in the British Saloon Car Championship.

PHK 614D was raced by Team Lotus one more time, with Graham Hill piloting it to a first-in-class finish in the season-opening Race of Champions at Brands Hatch in 1967 – just a year before he’d take his second Formula 1 World Championship title.

A short private career followed, with Brian Robinson securing an impressive third place overall in the 1968 season while competing for A G Dean Racing.

Jim Clark Lotus Cortina set for £200k sale
Jim Clark Lotus Cortina set for £200k sale
Jim Clark Lotus Cortina set for £200k sale
The car goes to auction in great condition; fuel injection was fitted in ’67

It spent most of the next three decades in South Africa, before being purchased in 1997 by Cedric Selzar – Jim Clark’s former race mechanic – who brought it back to the UK for a thorough but sympathetic restoration.

Bought from Selzar by the current owner, it remains in outstanding condition today, complete with its original shell and period upgrades to the engine and suspension.

Naturally, such a celebrated competition car commands an appropriately legendary price tag. The guide price? Somewhere between £180,000 and £200,000.

If it hits that upper estimate, it’ll be the most expensive Cortina ever sold – eclipsing the current record of £191,900, set by another Jim Clark Cortina at the Goodwood Festival of Speed sale earlier this year.

“We’re delighted to be offering this amazing Lotus Cortina at our inaugural Autosport International Sale,” said Lionel Abbott, classic car specialist at Silverstone Auctions. “With its impressive history, it’s a fantastic addition to the sale catalogue and a sign of what’s to come.”


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