Ford is not only known for its souped up hatchbacks and classic car icons – oh no - the Transit van with the attitude and haulers workhorse of choice was present at the rally in various forms, not least the infamous 'Super Van MK3'.
And did the crowd know it.
The van has been doing the rounds since it was conceived over a decade and a half ago, with its pedigree in its previous two Mark models – it sports a Cosworth HB 3.5 litre V8 that blasts out 730 horses at 13,500 RPM.
Combined with a lightweight composite shell (probably the only part that has any resemblance to your builders model next door) and aluminium space frame chassis; this beast would get you from A to B like no other.
As long as you don’t mind sacrificing your hearing and floor space.
Any Americans passing through leafy Beaulieu wouldn’t of been disappointed either.
A Ford Galaxie (far from the popular family mover in the 90's) represented what Ford had to offer in the States in the 60's – made by the company as a celebration of the Space Race - it also happened to be about the same size as a rocket boaster, and probably got through as much fuel.
Another fuel guzzler and big block American classic seen at the show was the original 'Pony Car' - first generation Mustang.
Although not as many as I would of hoped; those that were present were more than willing to entertain the crowd with a chorus of V8.
Many newer generations were at the rally, but none with the charm of the original.
Although too many models and variants to mention in one article – the Rally perfectly displays the Ford ethos from the beginning was to cater to the people – and throughout its production it has done just that.
Those I spoke to at the event reminisce fondly on their first Anglia, Escort, Capri or Fiesta and how they would spend the weekends taking the block apart to fix or upgrade and customise the sometimes temperamental heart of the car.
Its this do it yourself customising that made the Mustang an American icon, and the Escort one of the most popular cars in the UK – a way for the average bloke young or old to feel like Steve McQueen or Colin McRae with a bit of elbow grease and spare time.
Ford made popular cars that could be made unique by the people, and that’s why events like Simply Ford are so good for its community to continue being inspired.
Events like these are perfect for meeting and talking with enthusiasts – and while it was agreed that Beaulieu is a brilliant location for meets; the organisation of cars was disappointingly scatter-shot.
The ability to structure an event into clubs, class, model or year would help like-minded fans mingle easier seems to be a common complaint by those taking part – and it would also give the general public more of a coherent show.