When we collected the car the leather was filthy, but after many hours with a soft cloth and a couple of bottles of Auto Glym Leather Care Cream it was like new. This cream is marvelous stuff. It contains no solvents which can dry out leather and cause it to crack (Never use silicone preparations on hide!) and as you rub the cream in you can hardly see it working, but it does. Soon you notice the leather getting shades lighter and the soft cloth you're using gets dirtier and dirtier. Altogether it took me three separate goes with the cream over about a month before the leather was completely clean. The Leather Care cream has even lifted off a Coke spill on the rear seat which had stained the leather. Now it has disappeared.
The seats are very comfortable, but they are not as big as the previous Granadas, and not quite as soft on a long run as those old armchairs I was so fond of. But the leather is beautiful and the smell of hide when you first open a door is a pleasure in itself. They are heated, which is nice when you get in on a freezing morning. I expected them to be clammy in hot weather like the old vinyl seats, but they are not, perhaps because leather is a natural substance and they have breather holes cut into the contact surfaces.
There are numerous other touches that make it such a pleasure to drive. The rear wiper works intermittently on the first position and if the front wipers are on when reverse gear is selected the rear window gets a flick just once to clear the rear view. I remember a motor correspondent recently enthusing about this on a new Japanese car, but Ford drivers have had this facility since the Ford Sierra! When you select reverse, the nearside door mirror dips to show the kerb. The driver's rear mirror is electrochromatic: it dips automatically when headlights shine into it. There is a remote stalk on the left hand side of the steering column which controls the radio/CD player and this is an excellent facility I've not had since I fitted a Sony CD Player to a previous Granada. The windows are one-touch opening, and the drivers window is one-touch closing as well.
The number of relays Ford must have used just to control the interior lights is simply staggering. The interior lights come on when a door is opened, but if the same door is left open for more than 20 minutes the interior lights switch off. This is to prevent a drain on the battery because as well as the roof lights there are front and rear footwell lights and kerb lights mounted in the bottom of all the doors. But once a door is closed the interior lights stay on for about half a minute, unless the driver switches on the ignition, in which case the interior lights go out at once. When the driver switches off the ignition the interior lights come on for about half a minute to provide time to leave the vehicle. The interior lights also switch on automatically when you key the remote to open the doors. If you open the rear load door by remote, (there is a second button on the remote) the rear luggage light comes on, by itself. For details see Multiplex wiring in the Scorpio
If the car is in Drive, a warning tone sounds if a door is opened.
Unfortunately, unlike all my previous Granadas where the window motors worked
when the drivers door is open, the Scorpio electric windows don't work unless
the ignition is on. I suppose this is for security but I miss the convenience.
The doors and windows can be deadlocked from the remote, there are ultrasonic
detectors for the door windows and a sensor built into the rear luggage deck
windows. The ignition key has a built-in chip, of course, and replacements can
be programmed at a cost. Without the chip the engine management system is
disconnected even if a key fits the lock. This system is called
PATS (Passive Anti-Theft System) and is now virtually
standard across the Ford range. The Thatcham approval for this system is good
enough to keep the Insurance Group at 15 or 16, the same as the 12V Granada
despite the massive hike in power.
The radio fitted is the premium 100mm height Ford 7000. It has EON, RDS, Traffic and News selection and the volume increases automatically to remain the same level above ambient noise. The radio will work without the ignition, but switches off after one hour. The six station preset buttons also select the CD from the six stack CD tucked away in the rear nearside luggage side panel and buttons 2 to 5 are part of the anti-theft removable panel, without which the radio doesn't work. As an experiment I tried the pull-out of a Ford 4000 unit from a recent Escort, and no, it didn't work. The connections are different. Volume, station/disk and signal source are also selectable with the remote joystick beneath the indicator stalk on the steering column.
The Ride-Height control levels the rear of the car no matter what the load. On booze-cruises to France we stock up with six months supply of beer, completely filling the rear deck with beer cartons in stacks of four, plus several boxes of wine. The top of the rear wheel-arches lowers just to the top of tyres, but within five minutes the back jacks up to regain the previous height - level again!
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