In September last year our Company (not connected with the motor trade in any way) decided to purchase three new cars in the £2,000 plus category.
The first car purchased was an Audi 100LS mainly because the recipient had had one previously and the car he wanted was available “off-the-shelf”.
An order was placed in September for the second car which was to be a Granada GXL —top model of the Ford range. No delivery date could be given for this car and on December 18th, 1973, it was decided to purchase an Audi 100LS “off-the-shelf”. This was delivered within one week.
On October 18th, 1973, a firm order for the third car was placed which was to be a Ford Consul 3000 GT with a very full specification. A delivery date of December 1973 was tentatively given by the dealer. In January of this year a Ford Public Relations Executive informed us, after our own enquiries, that the car was unable to be made due to lack of a major component included in the specification. We altered the specification against our will to compromise with Fords and in due deference to the three-day week, etc.
The car was manufactured on February 15th, 1974, and dispatched to the carriers on February 21st, 1974. For two further weeks it lay in Ford’s park at Garston, Liverpool, having been sent up from Dagenham, not being delivered because Fords directed that the new Capri was to be distributed at the expense of other vehicles! This happened in this instance to a customer of five months standing, on a larger more expensive car. At all times Ford representatives have been most courteous and helpful and we are entering the sixth month of waiting.
It may interest you to know that this car was chosen partly as a result of the Editor’s favourable road-test reports (as was a Cortina 2000 GT previously). On a car that must now suffer massive depreciation due to the petrol situation (an event which has happened since the order was placed) I think I am understating the reasons why people buy foreign cars.
I suggest your extended road-tests on Ford cars are of little use if Fords cannot produce the goods and I let your readers draw their own conclusions.
[Name and address supplied—ED.]