During the first six months of 2022, more enthusiasts searched for the Ford Escort in online adverts than any other classic model, maintaining its lead in the popularity stakes  

Words: Paul Guinness

A specialist online sales site has revealed its latest Top 10 of the most searched-for classics during the first six months of 2022 – with the Ford Escort once again topping the list, cropping up in more searches than any other model so far this year.

Car & Classic (C&C) reports that the Escort continues to be the model most searched for on its website, with RS2000 versions in particular proving as popular as they did in 2021. C&C’s online auctions confirm the same trend, with a Lisbon-based 1977 wide-arch RS2000 X-Pack attracting a winning bid of £37,500 back in June.

Number two in terms of most searched for cars is the BMW 3 Series, with almost half of BMW searches said to be for M-spec models – up from a quarter in 2021, a sure sign that interest in the M division is at an all-time high during its 50th anniversary year. And in the number three spot is the evergreen MGB, proving that despite increased competition from today’s modern-classic sports cars, Abingdon’s bestseller is still as popular as ever.

Other British sports cars appearing in the Top 10 are two perennial favourites – the Triumph Stag and Jaguar E-Type – that appear at numbers four and eight respectively. Interestingly though, it’s the Volkswagen Golf that pops up at number five, pushing the Beetle – which featured in 2021 – out of the Top 10 altogether. Searches for Golf GTIs are said to be particularly strong so far this year.

Porsche’s iconic 911 appears at number six, with Land Rover’s Series models taking seventh place – dethroning the Ford Mustang that appeared on last year’s list. C&C reports high demand for all Series models, one of the high points being the £31,500 auction sale price of a fully restored SWB Series 3 back in April.

Occupying the bottom two slots in the Top 10 of searched-for classics are two more Blue Oval favourites: the Capri and Cortina respectively, with 20 per cent of all Cortina searches focused on the Lotus version.

The Escort’s popularity with classic buyers was cemented further last weekend as Princess Diana’s 1985 Ford Escort RS Turbo sold for a staggering £724,500 including fees at Silverstone Auctions, its huge price helped along by the car’s rare factory black paint and, for the most part, its special royal connection.