The Escort RS2000 Mk5 was the one in a long line of high performance Fords to carry the charismatic RS badge.
The performance of the Escort RS2000 certainly lives up to the RS tradition. It’s not only faster and more powerful than any previous road-going RS Escort, but it’s ‘cleaner’, more economical and far better equipped.
There’s no mistaking the RS on the road. The new nose, with its body-coloured bumper and deep spoiler, features bigger and more powerful headlamps with integrated long-range driving lamps.
On top of the bonnet are twin power bulges to clear the cam drive. Below the bumper, you’ll find rectangular fog lamps and wide air intakes to cool the engine and brakes.
And along each side, extensions to the sills improve aerodynamics as do the tallgate-mounted spoiler and deep skirt beneath the rear bumper.
Inside, the sporting theme is continued. The driver and front passenger are held tight in body-hugging Recaro seats which are fully adjustable for height and tilt. There’s also a small-diameter three-spoke steering wheel.
And to emphasise the key features, red highlighting is used for the instrument needles, the central horn push and the gear lever positions.
On the outside, the RS2000 comes with a set of distinctive five-spoke 6×15 aluminium alloy wheels.
Powered by a 2-litre 150bhp 16-value twin cam engine, the RS2000 is the most potent road-going Escort yet. It has a top speed of 130mph and can sprint from rest to 60mph in just 8.0 seconds. The engine is a fuel-injected, fully catalysed engine that produces 140lb ft of torque at 4500rpm,and produces more than 90 per cent of its pulling power from as low as 2300rpm.
Ford’s five-speed MTX75 gearbox was designed to have a high torque capacity yet provide a light, easy gear change. All gears run on needle roller bearings; there’s synchromesh on all speeds, including reverse; and low viscosity automatic transmission fluid is used to allow easy gear shifts when the temperature outside drops below zero. The gearbox is also filled for life, so no oil changes or top-ups are needed.
But the Escort couldn’t wear the famous RS badge if its handling failed to match the exciting performance. The RS2000’s suspension has stiffer springs, up rated dampers and a thicker front anti-roll bar. In fact the front suspension is 37 per cent stiffer than the conventional Escort settings, while the rear suspension is 21 per cent firmer.
High ratio power-assisted steering is also a feature, as are four-wheel disc brakes with electronically-controlled anti-lock. The RS2000 came with ultra low-profile 195/50 series tyres on 6×15-inch allow wheels.
Escort RS2000 Mk5 colours
- Diamond White
- Radiant Red
- Pacifica Blue
- Polaris Grey
- Moondust Silver
- Interior Trim
- Panache Dark Grey