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Buyers Guide to:

Ford Capri Laser

Useful Info


1984 to 1987

Fuel Type


Engine Sizes

1600cc, 2000cc

Engine Type


Drive Configuration


Capri Club

Burton Power

Just Kampers

01256 862288,


Originally launched back in 1969 and marketed with the slogan ‘The car you always promised yourself’, the Ford Capri was Britain’s answer to the Mustang. It soon proved hugely popular with buyers wanting style on a sensible budget, and in 1978 the Mk 3 model was launched with improved aerodynamics and a new range of engines including a beefy V6. Styling changes included a four- headlamp grille and a longer bonnet, and in 1984 the Laser model was introduced which replaced most of the range apart from the 2.8i. Featuring numerous cosmetic improvements, there was also stylish four-spoke RS alloy wheels and extra cabin trim. Production of the Capri finally ended in 1987.

  1. 1. Leading edge of the bonnet
  2. 2. Front panel behind the headlamps
  3. 3. Front and rear screen surrounds
  4. 4. Front wings and wheel arches
  5. 5. Front and rear valance
  6. 6. A/B posts
  7. 7. Sills
  8. 8. Door bottoms
  9. 9. Rear wheel arches
  10. 10. Tailgate

The Checklist

  • Every panel for corrosion, and pay particular attention to the inner wings and bulkhead.
  • The front wings are welded on, which means replacement is time-consuming. Check carefully for any signs of filler or previous bodges
  • Underneath as the floor of the cabin and boot are both rust-prone, and inspect the jacking points, too
  • That the doors aren’t misaligned or drop slightly when opened; it could be caused by rust around the hinges, and it’s an awkward area to repair
  • The condition of exterior trim. The steel bumpers can rust through, while missing or damaged parts can be tricky and costly to source
  • The engine for rattling caused by worn valve- gear; blue exhaust smoke indicating worn valve guides, valve stem oil seals, or piston rings/ bores; and for oil and coolant leaks
  • For evidence that the engine has been serviced regularly as lack of oil and filter changes will quickly lead to wear. It’s an easy engine to work on, though, and parts availability is very good
  • That the engine doesn’t overheat. The cooling system may have been neglected, leading to a build-up of silt in the radiator and water passages; evidence of new parts is a good sign
  • For rough running caused by fuel or ignition system problems. Both are easy to overhaul, and re-building the carburettor is a DIY task
  • The manual transmission for noise caused by worn bearings or tired second gear synchromesh. A sloppy shift can usually be cured by replacing the gear lever bushes
  • For rough shifts from the Ford C3 automatic gearbox. It needs regular fluid changes for longevity, and a re-build can be expensive if it fails
  • For oil leaks from the rear axle, although a noisy differential rarely leads to failure. Vibration at speed can be caused by a worn propshaft centre bearing, and ignoring the problem risks damage to the gearbox or differential
  • The suspension for worn or perished bushes, leaking dampers, and sagging rear leaf springs. Check that the rear spring hangers aren’t suffering from corrosion. Upgrades are available, so check to see whether this has been done, although many buyers favour originality
  • The front suspension turrets which are a common rot-spot. Although repairs aren’t especially dif cult they need to be done properly so ensure the work hasn’t been bodged
  • The brakes for wear or lack of maintenance, and listen for the drone of worn wheel bearings. A vibration through the steering wheel points to worn bushes in the front track control arms. The RS alloy wheels could be suffering from corrosion and will cost around £60 each to refurbish
  • The cabin for worn or damaged seat trim and door cards, while the top of the dashboard is susceptible to cracking. Replacement parts can be hard to find, and can also be pricey, so don’t assume a scruffy interior will be easy to sort
  • For damp carpets that indicate water leaks from the heater matrix (dashboard removal is needed to replace it) or windscreen seals. Damp can also cause the fuse box to corrode, leading to all manner of electrical problems, so check that everything works

Everything Check Out?

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