Thirty years ago, Ford decided it might be fun to turn the humble Sierra hatchback into a racing car. Five hundred units were required before the car could be homologated for competition, and the Ford Sierra Cosworth RS500 was born.
Visually the RS500 road cars looked little different from the already startlingly fast “standard” turbocharged Sierra Cosworths and on paper they were barely any quicker either. They had 227bhp, just 23 additional horsepower, worth a scant tenth of a second off the 0-60mph time.
But changes there were, to the engine, suspension and aerodynamics – and all with racing in mind. On track the formula was a success. An enormous, tarmac-ripping, record-busting success. From the UK all the way to Australia, if you wanted to win Touring Car races, you needed to get your hands on an RS500.