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Troutman

Exciting Day In Australian Cars

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The new Falcon was unveiled by Ford and the media yesterday. It comes just days after one of the four Australian car makers, Mitsubishi, announced it is going to cease local operations in a couple of months. Last month apparently saw the Falcon's worst monthly sales result since it was first built here in 1960. As we build mostly full size sedans, the SUV and small car markets have eaten away at sales. Holden and Toyota are only doing very well due to exports.

 

As a result of the tough times, the Falcon is losing some of its Australian input. The classic Australian 4 speed auto is now being replaced with a US-sourced 5-speed built in France, with a German ZF 6 speed available also.

 

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Even more classic is the engine, which has evolved directly over the decades from the first Falcon motor (then a very American car). Aside from the usual stuff like electronic throttle control, variable valve timing, DOHC etc, some dimensions remain from the 1959 original straight six. Unfortunately this will be its final iteration before being replaced with a Duratec V6 in a few years.

 

At the top end, the fastest model is the turbocharged version of the six, now available in luxury models too. Its 0-100 km/h time is likely to be close to 5 seconds. The 'Ford Performance Vehicles' 5.4 V8 versions will now exceed 300 kW (below); this is an American engine similar to that in the F Series etc.

 

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As always, all models are still rear-drive, with straight six or V8 power. This is a very common fleet car, family car, taxi and police car in Australia, similar to its rival the Holden Commodore. It was traditionally a big part of Australian culture to be a 'Holden person' or 'Ford person' with intense rivalry on the racetrack especially in the 60s and 70s, though today there is less interest due to the huge number of imports with respective enthustiasts. Hopefully the new model will help prevent further decline of the segment.

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Lets stick to the Falcon, please.

 

It looks like the euro Mondeo, which has recieved mainly positive regards. Huge space, very good comfort and road manners, but lower quality interior and seats compared to say Passat, its main competitor here.

 

Anyway, a LOT cheaper than the Volvo V70 which it shares its floorpan and some engines with. As opposed to the new Mazda 6, which the german magazine Auto, Motor & Sport stated :rolleyes:

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Yes styling-wise Ford have tried to make it more international, which is just as well. The newly appointed (American) boss of Ford Australia, after driving the car, has demanded an immediate review into possible conversion to LHD for export markets.

 

Compared to a Mondeo it has a few major aces, being larger, rear wheel drive, torquey in-line six and high performance V8 variants available.

 

One of the best things is that because it is a) locally made and B) sold in huge numbers to fleet markets, parts tend to be reasonably affordable new, and available en masse secondhand. It's easy to keep one running long-term. And the 4.0 six is a known quantity for sheer strength too, as it dates from an era when cars in general were made to last longer.

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Putting the “oops” in scoops: spy shots of new Falcon

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Ford executives in Australia are having a quiet chuckle about a set of grainy spy shots of two heavily disguised Ford Falcons that are doing the rounds on US automotive websites.

 

The company unveiled the new Falcon more than a month ago, but it seems Ford’s car transport contractor in the US hasn’t got the news yet.

 

The “spy shots” appeared on the Edmunds Inside Line site this week, sparking renewed speculation that Ford Australia would lead the engineering development of a new global rear-while-drive platform for Ford.

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Drive conducted independent performance testing of Ford’s new FG Falcon and came away impressed with the results.

 

Even the base model Falcon XT performs admirably, accelerating from 0-100km/h in 7.1 seconds. What those figures don’t show, however, is the easily accessible torque, or mid-range pulling power, that makes the Falcon so strong in everyday driving.

 

The fastest of the Falcon range – by some margin – is the impressive Falcon XR6 Turbo, which shares its drivetrain with the Falcon G6E Turbo (above).

 

It can easily sprint to 100km/h in 5.1 seconds – and it will do it time and again. It’s a fantastic engine that is the pick of the performance range.

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