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Ford – Barchetta

The Ghia Barchetta originated to fill the empty niche identified by Ford’s V.P. of International Automotive Operations for a low cost, modern two-seat sports model, a market left unfilled in the early Eighties. Constructed on the Fiesta XR2 platform, Ghia Barchetta was never intended to be displayed publicly but rather to demonstrate that a profitable market could be developed from good design and standard production components. It is an example of what-might-have-been for its concept did not find a cost-effective production home in Europe even though it eventually inspired the Ford Australia Mercury Capri which was confined to that market.

Vehicle Overview

Constructed by Ghia on the Fiesta XR2 platform, with 86 horsepower 1.6 liter overhead valve 4-cylinder engine, Ghia Barchetta took both its inspiration and its name from the lightweight, elemental barchettas of the Fifties. Constructed at Ghia in steel, the Ghia Barchetta concept’s taut construction with minimal front and rear overhangs emphasized the economy of design inherent in its front-wheel drive platform while displaying the good looks and style of larger packages. The matte dark grey bumpers give Ghia Barchetta a dressed-up look and highlight its rounded wedge profile. Small extractor vents behind the front wheels complement the barchetta heritage and highlight the metal-forming talents of Ghia’s calderai, the traditional crafters of ornamental brass and copperware from the Turin area.

The realization of the Ghia Barchetta so enthused the sports car fans among Ford Europe’s management that the intention to use it only internally as a demonstration was rethought and it was publicly displayed in 1983 as a concept illustrating the versatility of Ford’s FWD powertrain and chassis components. At least some enthusiasts felt the same, starting a “Barchetta Club” in Germany which counted as many as 10,000 members but still not enough support to find Ghia Barchetta a home in Europe. Built as an operating concept, Ghia Barchetta has a fully functional cloth soft top and rides on 13″ cast alloy wheels with 185/60HR-13 Goodyear NCT tires. Ghia’s strength among Ford’s several design studios was its ability, in a very short period, to construct a functional concept, very close to the production realization. Ghia Barchetta demonstrates that capability.

– The Rebirth Of The Open Two-Seat Sports Car
– One-Off Designed and Fabricated by Ford’s Ghia S.p.A. studios in Turin, Italy
– Debuted SITEV, Geneva, Switzerland May 1984
– Chassis No. VS6BXXWPFBBE49119
– 347km from new
– Original Condition
– Hand-Crafted Steel Body
– Original Soft-Top
– Four-cylinder 1.6 liter OHV engine
– Four-speed manual transmission

Thanks to the Scott Grundfor Company for the pictures and informations

Technical Specifications

  • Body
  • Year
  • Make
  • Model
  • Coachbuilder
  • Length (mm)
  • Width (mm)
  • Height (mm)
  • Photo credits
    Scott Groundfor Company
  • Engine Type
  • Designer
    Filippo Sapino

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