EVERYONE LOVES A SECRET
THESE TWO BOOKs ARE FULL OF THEM
The Secret Fords project is unique. Former Ford product designer turned author Steve Saxty worked for Mazda, Porsche and Jaguar – and spent decades consulting with car companies. His idea for Secret Fords was conceptually simple but stunningly ambitious; to take readers behind the scenes of the secret world of car design. They would embark on a 50-plus year journey back in time to see the secret prototypes, one-offs, and cancelled cars that Ford created as each new model was born. It was a unique idea and nothing like it had been attempted before.
To realise Steve’s ambition, he needed the help of Ford Motor Company to permit past and present employees to tell their stories – and allow the use of thousands of never-seen, previously confidential photos. Designers, engineers, and executives around Ford’s world rushed to help and share their tales. The result was not only a unique series of books, but something greater. Ford encouraged Steve to interview more than 200 past and present employees without asking to review his writing, so that readers see a true insider’s story. The never-seen Ghia archive was made available for the first time.
The author soon realised that he had too much material for one book and split it into two volumes. Secret Ford’s Volume One was released in late 2020 to critical acclaim. It was awarded Book Of The Month in several magazines, including the award of Classic Ford Magazine’s Best Book of 2021 and a finalist for 2021 RAC Book Of The Year. The first volume covered Ford cars designed during the early ’70s from the Capri onwards, up to and including the four-door Sierra Sapphire. Readers of Steve’s existing books asked him, once again, for an extended-length Collector’s Edition. This was released as a two-book boxed set and it quickly became the best-selling version of Volume One. The last few hundred copies of both the Standard and Collector’s Edition will remain in stock for a few months.
The second Volume is now being released. It picks up the story in the mid-to-late ’80s and hurtles through time to the early 2000s, concluding with the Focus RS. Incredibly, Ford’s enthusiasm for this unique project went up a gear with Volume Two. Over 5000 images from Ford Design’s archive were digitised for the first time – many of them marked ‘STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL’ – bringing Volume Two one step, and two decades, closer to the present. The relationship grew so strong that something unique happened and past met the present when Amko Leenarts, Ford’s Director of Design, decided to give his team – and enthusiasts everywhere – a gift. Volume Two of Secret Fords would, like Volume One, be created in single-book Standard and two-book Collector’s Edition PLUS a limited-run three-book RS Special Collector’s Edition.
Steve was determined that the RS Special Collector’s Edition lived up to its name. Volume Two contains the designers’ first-hand stories, in their own words, of how the Escort Cosworth and Focus RS were created. The third book then makes a dramatic nod to the future when Ford’s current designers reinvent an ’80s Ford RS icon for the 2030s. It’s a dramatic, conclusion – for now – of the five books that feature in Volumes One and Two of the Secret Fords project.
Volume One highlights
Over 100 never-seen cars revealed
Design stories of the most iconic ’70s and ’80s Fords
Forewords by Ford’s former chief designer Patrick le Quement and engineer Richard Parry-Jones
Insiders’ stories of the ultimate unicorn: Escort RS1700T
Beautiful design sketches – published for the first time
Head-spinning prototypes and one-offs –
Three Escort Coupes
Six unseen Capris
Five radical Sierra alternatives
300-plus pages, twice the size of many car books
Two-book Collector's Edition in boxed slipcase, features author-signed and numbered copy + Scrapbook
Free Secret Fords posters worth £9.50 each
Standard single-book edition: £39.95
Final copies come with free £9.50-value Secret Fords poster and free UK postage worth £10.70
Two-book Collectors Edition: £69.95
Final copies come with two free £9.50-value Secret Fords posters worth £19 and free UK postage worth £10.70
Volume Two highlights
More than 5000 never-seen images scanned, sifted and sorted
Forewords by designer Ian Callum and last-ever-words in print from engineer Richard Parry-Jones
Almost 350 pages – astonishing value
Incredible untold stories of the Escort Cosworth, Focus RS and the GN34 secret supercar plus cancelled Escort
See what happened behind the scenes with the ’91 Escort and mid ’90s Scorpio
Two-book Collector's Edition in boxed slipcase features author-signed and numbered copy + Scrapbook and two posters
Three-book RS Special Collector's Edition adds unique RS slipcase, third book on secret RS cars, including designers first-hand stories and Ford Design's reimagined RS icon for the 2030s.
Standard single-book edition: £39.95
Launch copies come with £12.50-value poster
Two-book Collectors Edition: £69.95
Launch copies come with two £12.50-value poster worth £25
Three-book RS Special Collectors Edition: £89.95
Launch copies come with two RS posters and one standard. Total value £36.50
What an utterly superb book. The depth of content, the balance of photos to text and the sheer depth of knowledge that underpins it is second to none. I’m really looking forward to this new issue as it’s more my era. If it’s half as good as this volume I know I won’t be disappointed.
It is obvious that a great deal of research has gone into this and the degree to which the archives door has been prised open is quite remarkable. There is nothing like talking to the horses mouth and the author has certainly done this. It appears that I am too late to get a copy of the author's previous book so if you fancy a copy of this one then don't delay as it may be too late if you leave it. Totally recommended without reservation.
As a diehard fan of all things ford, Steve's book is a dream. I now have two of his books and the never seen before pictures and information, blows me away. If you are into your Fords, you HAVE to have this.
As a dyed in the wool Ford nut I thought I knew everything about the Blue Oval but boy, was I wrong. This book made me say 'oh, I didn't know that' on more than one occasion. Even if you only have a passing interest of Ford, I can't recommend this book highly enough. Volume 2 can't come quick enough!!
After having purchased ‘The Cars You Always Promised Yourself’’? I keenly awaited the release of ‘Secret Fords’ volume 1, and what a fantastic read it is. As an avid Ford fan and owner since the late ‘70’s, it was fascinating to learn so much stuff - so difficult to put it down. The way Steve pulls it altogether is a great feat, and his enthusiasm and energy just flies from every page. Can’t rate this book highly enough.
Since I received this book I haven't been able to put it down, absolutely fascinating, now looking forward to volume 2.
Even if you are not a fan of cars from Ford, this book will entertain and delight you. It's like having a pass into the secret studios of Ford Europe to take a peek at some of the many cars that were considered, planned, designed .but for various reasons, never saw production. As a 'true-blue' Ford fan who has owned Escorts, Cortina, Focus and Mondeo plus several Aussie Falcons, I was enthralled by the book, the words and of course the photos. Steve Saxty has given us a book that's quite unique and we must thank Ford of Europe for allowing so many of its secret cars to be featured. I look forward to Volume Two. I have a copy of 'The Cars You Always Promised Yourself' and it was on the strength of that book that encouraged me to buy this book.
An absolutely stunning book.Purchased ‘The Cars You Always Promised Yourself’ in 2018 and Steve’s latest volume is equally as brilliant.Many thanks!!
My partner did the purchasing - A christmas gift - so I can't speak to that, but I'm given to understand it was all top notch. The book itself is a wonderful piece, the print quality is superb, and the content is excellent. Clearly well researched, and with a raft of photos and information I'd not come across before. Excellent read, and worth every penny.
A very interesting read with some great supporting photos showing the development of week known classics. Looking forward to volume 2