1978 Ford Escort Mk2 RS Is Ken Block’s First RWD Gymkhana Car: Video
Although Ken Block has made a name for himself honing Ford Focuses and Fiestas, he’s a big fan of classic cars. As you may recall, in 2014 he unveiled the Hoonicorn — a heavily modified 1965 Mustang with one of the meanest body kits out there, and a V-8 that cranks out 845 horsepower. Now, the former WRC driver introduced his second gymkhana car based on a classic, this time around in the form of a Ford Escort Mk2.
The car you’re about to see in the cool video above is actually Block’s first rally car, which he purchased in 2008. Seven years later he decided to transform it into a gymkhana car and commissioned Japanese widebody designer firm Rocket Bunny for the conversion.
The end result is wild to look at. The Escort features flared fenders and wide Fifteen52 wheels wrapped in Pirelli tires, as well as a menacing black livery with a "Stars and Stripes" hood. Block’s two-door racer is actually very similar to the wide-body, second-gen Escorts that raced in the European Touring Car Championship and won four DRM titles in the 1970s, which makes it that much more impressive.
Naturally, the classic body hides modern-day underpinnings, including a rally-spec 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that generates 333 horsepower and has a 9,000-rpm redline. What makes it even more special is that it’s Block’s first-ever rear-wheel-drive gymkhana car. Hit "play" to see it in action.