The Life Story of a Oyster Gold 3.0S Capri

This is still in preparation and will have photographs of the car as it ages to go with the text.


The Early Years

The story begins in a factory as you all know, so won't bore you with that load of rubbish.

This is Ford's Dagenham, England plant not producing our Capri, as ours was built in Cologne, Germany.

After about a year in the factory car park, possibly like the other Fords above, we are the new owners on 1st August 1979 .


Details as follows:


Capri 3.0S 3909.80

Metallic Oyster Gold paint 59.04

Reflectographic number plates 14.00

Road Fund licence 50

2 Gallons of Petrol 2.08

Car Tax 366.90

Delivery 54.82

15% VAT 660.99


TOTAL = 5117.63

 (Note: the was approx 1.7 U.S. $ in 1979, sorry I haven't got any other exchange rates)


One of the cylinder head gaskets was found to be leaking shortly after delivery. At the first service at 600 miles, the coolant was coming out of the side of the engine. This was pointed out to the service engineer, but he was disinclined to correct the problem! The works manager had to be called to look at it and it was eventually done. Incidentally one more service was done at 6,000 miles and this was the last service the car had in a garage and my husband has done all the servicing himself since. I have helped him on occasions when he needed an extra pair of hands, for example, holding up the gearbox by a piece of rope as you will read later on.



The car is still very new and very good to drive, no sign of any rust as yet, well I should have expected so, as it was still a youngster. But the cause of rust in the engine compartment was about to happen, the radiator started to leak. Antifreeze does a great job to encourage rust. Despite lots of liquid repairs poured into the radiator, the leak became so bad that a new radiator was required. This was fun, because when we got the new one, we had to give the shop the old one. We had to do this miles from our house and as we didn't have another car at the time, we had to change it in the street outside the shop. Luckily we had brought all the tools we needed to do the job and it went reasonably well and the new one was put in place. We still have this radiator to this day and have had no more problems with it. At least it has lasted a good deal longer than the original Ford one.

The first two of the five accidents happened this year. The back of a London Taxi was intercepted by the bonnet. The small dent in the bonnet that was received lasted until the accident of later years enabled us to cover it up at long last. The next accident was the result of a drunk driver reversing into the bonnet this time. Because he was so abusive it wasn't followed up.

Neither of these did that much damage except that the bumper looked a bit like the second driver, i.e., at a tilt and not completely as it should with a car.



Ignition and rough running problems started that have been around on and off since. These have given the car its temperamental nature and started it on the road of its alter egos of male/female. Various expressions of power, force and temperament with its 3.0 Litre engine showed one face, yet the gold metallic paint and typical Capri shape gave it the other side.



This is the price of a gallon (4.5Litres) of petrol in March 1982. Two star was 145p and four star 149p. .

During a cold winter with snow on the ground, the car decides to lead us on a wild goose chase in the head gasket department! We thought there was a problem with one of them, so with very few tools, painfully cold and numb fingers in a non heated and extremely cold garage, we stripped the heads. Nothing to be seen, so back it goes together again. Luckily one thing we found, before it caused any trouble, was that there was a chipped gear on the distributor shaft. No other damage apart from this. We decided to take the car to a garage to have this replaced.

I took the car in to get the job done. It was running very well, by the way, as I drove there. But funny thing was, when I collected it later, it seemed as if it was running on porridge of the very lumpy variety! I went back straight away and asked if they had done the timing. Thinking I didn't know anything about cars, because I was female I suppose, they said that they were only told to do the distributor shaft gear. Of course they were trying to make out that this had got nothing to do with the timing!! But arguing with them that I knew perfectly well where the points were and all about the timing, they agreed reluctantly to retime it. Of course when they had done this the car ran perfectly again.

On a road in the September of that year, pondering on whether it will be a long time before the car will be like this I wonder? Not the typical breakers yard view though.


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