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Mk2 RS2000 – 1976 to 1980

Feb 02,2006 Julian

Although the Mk2 RS2000 did not find its way to customers until early 1976, its design had started out as far back as 1974, where a major facelift over other Mk2 models was, quite literally, taking shape. The result, first seen in Geneva during March of 1975, certainly placed it firmly aside from the rest of the range thanks to a wedge-shaped nose cone fitted to the front of the car.

Claims were made at the time about reduced drag; though some commentators of the day thought its appearance might be more to do with styling than aerodynamic engineering. However, the overall result was the ‘plushest’ RS to date - a car which, like its Mk1 predecessor, was an immediate hit with customers.

The ‘droop-snoot’ polyurethane nosecone housed four headlamps, and in order to fit in with the cars overall shape, was set well into a reshaped front wings. In addition a different bonnet was required to complete the transformation. The interior also benefited from a major facelift and now featured full carpets, recliners, glovebox, and centre console. In effect, the car was powered by the same 1993cc Pinto engine as the Mk1 version; however, there was now a cast iron manifold and a plastic air filter housing (al la 2-litre Capri).


The RS2000 remained in similar drag until poor sales (since its launch) sounded the death knell for the Mk2 RS Mexico in late 1978. At this point the RS2000 became available in either ‘Base’ or ‘Custom’ spec. In essence, Ford now aimed the base model at potential Mexico customers, indeed much of the redundant Mexico interior ended up as the base RS2000 trim. The Custom however, was now a wholly different affair, fitted with alloys as standard (base was fitted with steel wheels), the now infamous ‘fishnet’ Recaro recliners, tinted glass, and even a remote door mirror!

Also worth mentioning is the oddity of the Mk2 RS2000 flat-front. It’s understood that a flat-fronted version was never offered for sale in the UK (although they were produced in South Africa and Australia). As such any UK registered RS2000 with a flat-front has most likely been modified post-purchase. However, this would have been a common occurrence in competition use, thus allowing the owner to source cheaper replacement parts for repair, and as such, the same thing no doubt happened on a number of road cars.

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