The March 1972 released Granada succeeded the British Ford Zephyr, and the German Ford Taunus, as Ford's European executive car offering. At first, lower models in the range were called the Ford Consul, but from 1975 on they were all called Granadas. The car soon became popular for taxi, fleet and police usage. It was also converted into limousine and hearse versions by the British companies Coleman Milne and Woodall Nicholson.
Mechanically, the European Granada conformed to Ford convention, the initial range using the Ford Essex V4 unit in 2.0L displacement, and the "Essex" V6 engine in 2.5 and 3.0L capacities. German models employed a Ford Taunus V4 engine in 1.7L displacement, or the 3.0L Essex V6, or, more commonly the "Cologne" V6 in 2.0, 2.3 or 2.6L capacities. The V4 was later replaced by the Pinto unit. The car generally followed mechanical layout of its predecessors Ford Zephyr/Zodiac, utilizing a coil sprung independent rear end, although front McPherson struts were replaced by double wishbones, introduced 18 months earlier in smaller TC Cortina and Taunus. On the other hand the Granada – like Ford 17M/20M/26M – featured drum brakes at rear, as opposed to the Ford Zephyr/Zodiac rear disc brakes.