1968 Ford XT GT at Auto Classic Show

Brilliant Green Ford Falcon XT GT

Ford Falcon XT GT 302

Another person I caught up with at the Auto Classic Show at the Waterloo Bay Hotel, Wynnum (Brisbane) was Pete who owns an awesome original high performance 302 powered 1968 Ford XT GT.

Falcon XT GT enginePete has had this car for 10 years and has done a full restoration from the ground up. It took over 12 months to complete and many meticulous hours.

It has the original paint and original 4 speed transmission. As the rebuild progressed, all the original fittings were put back on the car after going through their own genuine component rebuild (including the stickers, would you believe).

 

Ford Falcon XT GT dashboardFord XT GT Aussie Muscle car

Ford XT GT Australian Muscle CarThe car is 50 years old this year and is in absolutely amazing condition. It is a real credit to Pete and his attention to detail with this baby !

 

 

 

You can catch the Auto Classic Show (Aussie Hot Rodders Facebook page) every 4th Sunday at the Waterloo Bay Hotel, Wynnum, Brisbane (www.waterloobayhotel.com.au). The next show is 28th October and is a Halloween theme. You can find the event on Facebook via this link.

I am double booked for that day so unfortunately, won’t be able to get there but if you’re able to attend, it’s sure to be a scarily great day !

Cheers, Martin

By | October 23rd, 2018|Australian Muscle, Ford Australia|Comments Off on 1968 Ford XT GT at Auto Classic Show

Ford Mustang Bullitt

The Ford Mustang Bullitt arrives in Australia in October 2018

Those of you who do know what a 1968 “Bullitt” Mustang Fastback is will drool at the latest announcement from Ford Australia. From October 2018, a Ford Mustang knows as the Mustang Bullitt celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Steve McQueen iconic movie will be on sale here in Australia.

No Ordinary Mustang

This is no ordinary Mustang (not that Mustangs are ordinary in any guise). Based on the Mustang GT, this monster green machine will be the most powerful Mustang ever sold here by Ford Australia. The 5 litre Coyote-derived V8 engine churns out 345kW of power and generates 556Nm of torque.

For the petrol heads, the engine has been upgraded for heightened performance with an Open Air induction system and intake manifold with 87mm throttle bodies, Ford Racing air-filter and a Powertrain Control Module shared with the Shelby Mustang GT350 (oh yeah !!!).

The Bullitt is only available in a 6 speed manual transmission but has been tricked up for the enthusiast with Mustang’s rev-matching system. Coupled to the Active Valve Exhaust, this thing has a heart-stirring soundtrack and the mumbo and performance to match. It stops on the proverbial dime too with bright red Brembo brakes all round (it’s not the colour that makes the difference; as we all know, red makes things go faster, not slower).

The Tech

Ford Mustang Bullitt in Australia

 

OK, having Bullitt badges all over the beast is not that tech but there is trick suspension (called “MagneRide) and an array of snappy kit including 8” full colour reversing camera, Autonomous Emergency Braking, Lane Keep Assist and Adaptive Cruise Control.

 

Ford Mustang Muscle Car

 

You also get Apple and Android compatibility as well as native satellite navigation. What would Frank have thought with all of this at his fingertips ?

 

 

 

For those youngies who have no idea what I’m talking about, Google “Bullitt the movie” on your iPad/Smart Phone/Tablet or click on the YouTube video for the movie trailer.

One for the Collectors

Bullitt car review

There will only be 700 of these Dark Highland Green collectables (yep, harking back to the old Model T days: have any colour you want as long as it’s dark green) each with a unique Bullitt number etched into the passenger’s side plaque. The stark white cue ball gear knob may not be to everyone’s taste (a little bit “meh”) but there’s no denying its origin !

 

 

 

Ford Mustang Bullitt in Australia

 

The rest of the instruments and controls make the heart race inspired by the (cue Ford’s Marketing Arm) “Le Mans winning” Ford Performance GT sports car. Bring it on !

 

 

The Damage

You really do get fair bit of kit with this number AND you are buying a classic collectable in modern form. At a touch under AU $74,000 (list price), this is really worth considering if you’re in the market for a high-performance Mustang with that little bit “extra”.

My Closing Thoughts

Would I have one ? In a word, yep BUT…………. I would have to test drive it first around the burbs, on the highway and on a track just to make sure it is right for me. I’m sure you’re with me on this ! Now where’s a street around here with big hills and dips ?

 

 

 

Oh, for those interested in nostalgia, check out the recent Mustang Bullitt launch in the USA

 

And continuing the theme, Jay Leno’s take on the same is interesting

By | July 13th, 2018|Ford Australia|Comments Off on Ford Mustang Bullitt

Inflatable Seatbelts Are Coming

inflatable seatbeltsThere is absolutely no doubt that seatbelts save lives and any driver or passenger who still believes that he or she doesn’t really need to wear a seatbelt is showing clear signs of the onset of insanity.

Yes I know they can be a pain if you’re jumping in and out of your car and if you don’t have them adjusted properly they be uncomfortable but what is nuisance value or discomfort when the option is dead?

However, while seatbelts undoubtedly save lives they can also inflict some minor injuries during accidents and they can leave behind some nasty bruises because crash forces are concentrated in the narrow area covered by the seatbelts.

While airbags can reduce those crash forces for front seat passengers up until now rear seat passengers have been left on their own to take whatever bruising is coming their way but at least for anyone riding in the backseat of a new Ford Mondeo things will soon change.

inflatable seatbeltsFrom the second half of 2014 … when Ford releases the all new Mondeo … Australia will see the introduction of inflatable seatbelts for rear seat passengers.

In normal operation, apart from what appears to be extra padding, these new inflatable seatbelts look little different to the seatbelts we have now. They also operate in just the same way but if an accident occurs these new inflatable seatbelts will deploy in just 40 milliseconds.

The inflated seatbelt’s increased diameter is more effective in holding the rear seat occupant in place and at the same time spreads the crash forces over five times more body area and so any injury caused by the seatbelt will be reduced. The inflatable seatbelt will also reduce head, neck and chest injuries.

If deployed the inflatable seatbelt’s airbag breaks through the belt fabric and expands sideways across the body. The airbag in the seatbelt fills at a slower rate than the dash airbags fitted to our vehicles because the seatbelt airbag is already close to the wearer so there is not the same need to bridge a gap similar to the one that exists between front seat occupants and the dashboard.

Now that Ford has introduced this technology I wonder how long it will be before we see inflatable seatbelts appearing in other models on the Australian market.

inflatable seatbelts

The seatbelts after the airbags have deflated

By | August 15th, 2013|Ford Australia, Technology|0 Comments

Ford EcoSport SUV Comes to Australia

Ford EcoSport comes to AustraliaAs if Ford doesn’t have enough SUVs in its line up … now there’s going to be yet another … the Ford EcoSport … due to hit the showrooms in December this year. But will Australian’s buy it?

Of course the Ford EcoSport isn’t exactly aimed at your average Australian SUV buyer … when we think of Australians and SUVs we tend to think big and Asian … or at least bigger than the EcoSport. And the EcoSport is built in India and comes with a 1.0 Litre engine … things that may discourage people from buying it.

Obviously Ford isn’t completely crazy though  … they are going to offer the EcoSport here in Australia with an optional 1.5 Litre petrol engine for all those who can’t get their head around the idea of driving a car with such a small engine.

And the Ford EcoSport is also going to come with a useful piece of technology that no other maker offers in the small SUV class so maybe there will be enough interest to translate into reasonable sales figures.

So what will we see when the Ford EcoSport arrives in December? A rugged but small SUV that has been around for a year or so and has been selling well in India. The standard 1.0 Litre EcoBoost engine delivers similar performance to a 1.6 Litre engine but with 20 percent better fuel economy.

Even Ford … in their press release … admits that the 1.0 Litre EcoBoost engine is small. They’re happy to tell you that it’s “tiny enough to fit on a sheet of A4 paper” and they’ve managed to wring 92kW of power and 170Nm of torque out of it.

For those who really can’t see themselves admitting to their friends that their new car has a tiny engine Ford has a 1.5 Litre petrol engine with twin independent variable camshaft timing available as an option.

ford-ecosport-2

Other features include electric power-assisted steering with comes with what Ford calls “Pull-Drift Compensation” to make it easier to handle in tight parking spots and tight U-turns. And if you ever do take your EcoSport SUV off road then you will have peace of mind knowing that Ford says that the EcoSport can wade through 550mm of water.

Small vehicles of any type tend not to stand up well to unpleasant meetings with bigger objects but Ford says that the EcoSport is especially strong because the body is made up of high-strength and ultra-high-strength steel.

If that’s not enough then the suite of airbags fitted to the EcoSport will give you added protections. There’s the usual driver and front passenger airbags along with side and curtain airbags. There’s alos a driver’s knee airbag … that should be useful if you’re tall.

Technology does feature in this vehicle and apart from the usual Bluetooth, and driver-assist systems there’s also Ford SYNC. This gives the driver the ability to operate some functions by voice control. I’m sure you’ve seen it before in some of Ford’s ads for the Mondeo so I won’t go into it here but it is something that no one else offers in the class and it is something that will appeal to some people.

Ford says that we’ll learn more about the Ford EcoSport closer to the launch date … and hopefully get some more images to show you … so if you’re in the market for a small but rugged SUV then stay tuned.

Back in 2012 I suggested that the EcoSport would sell well here in Australia and despite my tone in this article I still think it will … but we haven’t seen a mad rush towards smaller engines in the time between that first article and this one so maybe the idea of a 1.0 Litre engine is still a bit too much for many Australians to cope with.

By | August 14th, 2013|Ford Australia|0 Comments

Exporting the Ford Territory

Ford Territory TitaniumWhile Toyota and Holden have been exporting quite a few cars for some years Ford here in Australia hasn’t appeared to be all that interested in pursuing export markets for their products.

In 2005 2300 Ford Territory vehicles were exported to South Africa and a small number were sent to Thailand that same year. Of course Ford has been exporting the Ford Territory to New Zealand ever since they first rolled off the production line and has sold around 12,000 there.

That’s not a huge number when you compare it to what Holden and Toyota are doing but it seems that Ford may be having another go at building a market in Thailand. Last week 100 top-of-the-range Ford Territory Titanium all-wheel-drive diesels were loaded on a car carrier in Melbourne.

Ford Territory Titanium

While Ford is making all the right noises about being “excited” and receiving “strong interest” when they displayed a Territory at the Bangkok motor show in March it will be interesting to see if Ford really is committed to selling a vehicle into a foreign market that may go out of production when the next upgrade becomes due.

By | August 27th, 2012|Ford Australia|Comments Off on Exporting the Ford Territory

Ford Ranger Wildtrak

Ford Ranger WildtrackFord has finally released the flagship model in their range of Ford Ranger compact “pick-up trucks” and on paper it looks like a reasonable competitor in the top-end ute market

The Ford Ranger Wildtrak is available with three different cab/body styles in both 4×2 and 4×4 configuration and two different ride heights.

Engine and transmission
The Ford Ranger Wildtrak comes with the 3.2-litre diesel engine that’s available in the XL and XLT variants coupled to the same six-speed manual box that’s available across the range (a 6-speed auto transmission is available as an option) and all that applies the power to the road via a locking rear diff.

Fuel economy figures are as low as 9.4L/100km.

ford ranger wildtrak

Safety features
The Ranger Wildtrak comes with all the standard safety features that help give it a 5-star ANCAP safety rating along with rain sensing wipers, reversing sensors and auto headlights and the Hi-Rider version in both 4×2 and 4×4 versions have the ability to wade through water levels up to 800mm.

A feature of the Wildtrak’s safety equipment is a new rear view camera system. The wide-angle camera’s image is displayed in the electro-chromatic rear view mirror and marker lines are displayed with the image that show the path of the vehicle based on the current steering angle.

A centre line on the Ranger Wildtrak’s reversing display is designed to help the drive line up the tow ball with a trailer or van and additional coloured lines help the driver ascertain how far he or she is from other objects.

Ranger Wildtrak

Comfort
Creature comforts in the new Ford Ranger Wildtrak include leather trimmed seats with cloth inserts, Bluetooth with voice control, iPod integration, dual-zone climate control with voice activation, cooled centre console and privacy glass.

Ford Ranger Wildtrak

For the driver
For the driver the Ford Ranger Wildtrak offers 5-inch multi-function colour screen, satellite navigation, driving and fog lights, a towbar with 3,350 tonne towing capacity, tub liner and an extra 12-volt outlet in the rear.

 

The bottom line
The Ford Ranger Wildtrak starts at just $57,390 plus dealer and government charges (the auto transmission is an extra $2,000).

Will it really compete with the established players in the top-end ute market? On paper the Ford Ranger Wildtrak looks good but this is a market where brand loyalty seems to play a major part in purchase decisions so I would be surprised to see it even make a slight dent in the competition.

By | July 17th, 2012|Ford Australia|Comments Off on Ford Ranger Wildtrak

Win a New Ford Ranger

The new Ford Ranger ute

The new Ford Ranger ute

The release date for the new Ford Ranger ute is getting close and to help build some excitement about the new Ranger Ford are giving you the chance to win one of these great looking machines.

 

All you have to do is tell Ford what you think the ultimate challenge would be for the ute.

Would you take it to Fraser Island and try the beach as the tide comes in? Would you take it up to Kakadu and off the beaten track with an off-road van on the towbar?

What about the Simpson Desert?

Or do you know some fire trails that can really show how tough the new Ford Ranger is? I know a few in the hills north of Bathurst and west of the Macquarie River that can really take your breath away but are they tough enough to put the Ford Ranger to the ultimate test?

And the competition has now closed.

By | June 8th, 2011|Ford Australia|2 Comments

Ford SZ Territory

2011-ford-territoryThe new Ford SZ Territory that we took a peak at here has now been released and there’s no doubt that this is definitely going to take the Territory to a whole new level and with some impressive fuel consumption figures for the diesel version the new Ford Territory could be the right vehicle at the right time for many people.

The new Ford SZ Territory comes in three versions starting with the TX. The TS Territory sits in the middle of the range and the Titanium tops the range and replaces the old Ghia. Each of the variants is available as either two or all-wheel drive and all two-wheel drive models have the petrol engine as standard  with the diesel engine as an option. The all-wheel drive variants have the diesel as standard.

The petrol engine is not available in any of the all-wheel drive models.

The body
While the new Ford Territory still looks like a Territory there are some obvious differences in the new model.

2011-ford-territory-front

At the front there’s a new grille and new headlights and the Titanium gets high-tech LED position lamps. The bonnet has been redesigned, some subtle lines have been added to the front guards, a new C-pillar has been added and at the rear the tail lights have been re-designed to wrap around the vehicle. The rear bumper has also been re-designed.

The interior
At first glance at the interior you might think that little has changed inside the new Ford SZ Territory but the instrument panel has re-designed, the centre console has been changed and there’s a new four-spoke steering wheel.

For the driver there’s what Ford calls the “Human-Machine Interface” or HMI for short. Obviously this is where the driver and the SZ Territory meet … it’s where the vehicle tells the driver what is happening and where the driver tells the vehicle what they want the vehicle to do.

2011-ford-territory-dash

I guess in the old days it was called “the dashboard”.

So what do you see in the HMI? Well there’s the instrument cluster, a multi-function display, a steering wheel loaded with more controls than you would expect could be fitted on a steering wheel, full iPod and Bluetooth intergration, USB connectivity and a reversing camera on the TS and Titanium variants.

In the base model TX Territory you get a monochrome 5.8-inch LCD screen and a colour 8-inch LCD screen on the mid and top of the range models. Where a reversing camera is fitted the display on the LCD screen changes to the camera display when reverse is selected.

Satellite navigation is fitted standard to the Titanium variant and this is also displayed in the LCD screen. This satnav system features what Ford describes as “green routing” and this calculates the most economical route to your destination. It will also show you the fastest and shortest routes. There’s a choice of 2D and 3D map modes … street numbers are displayed … advanced lane guidance is included and there’s also a traffic message channel that will give you information on traffic congestion.

This system was first released in Australia by Ford in the 2008 FG Falcon.

The 4.0-litre I6 in-line six-cylinder engine in the SZ Territory

The 4.0-litre I6 in-line six-cylinder engine in the SZ Territory

Engines
The new Ford SZ Territory is the first to come with a high-tech 2.7-litre V6 turbo-diesel and this is offered along with Ford’s upgraded 4.0-litre I6 in-line six-cylinder petrol engine..

The new diesel engine that features common-rail injection was developed at Ford’s Diesel Technology Centre in Dagenham in the United Kingdom. It’s already seen use in a number of European based SUV’s but this is the first time that it has appeared in a Ford-badged vehicle.

This diesel engine produces 440Nm of torque at 1,900rpm and that continues on to 2500rpm. Maximum power of 140kW arrives at 4,000rpm.

Fuel consumption figures for the diesel are impressive considering the size of the vehicle. It has a combined cycle fuel economy of 8.2L/100km for the rear-wheel drive version and 8.8L/100km for the all-wheel drive models. The figures are slightly higher for the all-wheel drive Titanium with a combined cycle of 9.0L/100km.

If you do a lot of country driving then you will really like the 6.5L/100km for the rear-wheel drive an 7.2L/100km for the all-wheel drive (7.3L/100km for the Titanium)..

The upgraded petrol engine gives slightly more power and better fuel economy. Maximum power of 195kW arrives at 6,000rpm and maximum torque of 391Nm is achieved at 3,250rpm.

The combined cycle fuel economy figures for the petrol powered SZ Territory is 10.6L/100km and 8.0L/100km for country driving. Urban driving figures are still rather scary at 15.0L/100km.

Drivetrain for the SZ Territory diesel all-wheel drive

Drivetrain for the SZ Territory diesel all-wheel drive

Transmission
Both the petrol and the diesel engines are coupled to a six-speed transmission although the transmission on the petrol variants is slightly different to the transmission used on the diesel powered models.

For those who are interested in the technical details the petrol variants get the ZF 6HP26 transmission while the diesel version get the ZF 6R80 transmission.

There has also been a change in the way the front differential is mounted in the all-wheel drive versions. In the previous model the front diff was mounted on the chassis but in the SZ Territory the front diff is mounted on the sump.

While that may not sound all that exciting or noteworthy it does actually reduce the general noise level within the cabin

Extra airbag protection for the driver's knees in the new Ford SZ Territory

Extra airbag protection for the driver’s knees in the new Ford SZ Territory

Safety
The new Ford Territory SZ retains all the safety features that led to the previous model being awarded a five-star ANCAP safety rating and has even more safety features.

A new Generation 9 Dynamic Stability Control System … incorporating Roll Over Mitigation … developed by Bosch is fitted to the SZ. The Roll Over Mitigation system constantly monitors the vehicle’s behaviour and induces additional understeer when it detects an increased likelihood of rollover during extreme handling manoeuvres.

When the Roll Over Mitigation system detects the likelihood of a roll over it brakes individual wheels and reduces the driving torque to prevent the rollover and at the same time reduces engine speed to ensure greater stability.

Steering and suspension in the SZ Territory

Steering and suspension in the SZ Territory

TX standard equipment
Standard appointments in the TX Territory includes  automatic climate control with single-zone temperature control; four-way power-adjustable driver’s seat; power windows and side mirrors; reverse sensing system and an Interior Command Centre (ICC) fitted with a 5.8-inch monochromatic LCD screen.

This ICC includes integrated controls for a single-CD audio system which supports both iPods7 and Bluetooth® 5-operated mobile telephones and audio devices. An in-built USB port also allows music files to be played from a USB device. A 3.5-millimetre audio jack is also fitted.

The Territory TX also comes fitted with 17-inch alloy wheels and 30 interior storage compartments.

TS standard equipment
In addition to what comes as standard in the TX the mid-range Territory TS gains machined-face 18-inch alloy wheels; reverse camera; front fog lamps; a unique TS front bumper; and a front grille painted in satin silver. The TS is fitted with a premium Interior Command Centre which features a premium seven-speaker audio system with a 150-Watt amplifier and subwoofer along an eight-inch colour touch screen. This new touch screen allows both front-seat occupants to control a variety of audio, communication and vehicle settings by simply touching the appropriate on-screen symbol.

Titanium standard equipment
Obviously you get everything that was standard in the TS plus machined-face 18-inch alloy wheels painted in accent colour; unique front bumper styling; chrome-detailed upper and lower grille; LED front position lamps; Alpine rear DVD entertainment system; leather seat trim; and an integrated satellite navigation system with a Traffic Message Channel.

2011-ford-terrirtory-rear

The bottom line
TX
RWD    Petrol    $39,990
RWD    Diesel    $43,240
AWD    Diesel    $48,240

TS
RWD    Petrol    $46,990
RWD    Diesel    $50,240
AWD    Diesel    $55,240

Titanium
RWD    Petrol    $54,990
RWD    Diesel    $58,240
AWD    Diesel    $63,240

2011 Ford SZ Territory TX

2011 Ford SZ Territory TS

2011 Ford SZ Territory Titanium

By | April 8th, 2011|Ford Australia|Comments Off on Ford SZ Territory

2011 Ford Territory SZ SUV

ford-sz-territoryThe new Ford Territory SUV … designed and built right here in Australia … was unveiled last week and it’s certainly no truck but that’s not to say that it’s perfect. It sure looks good and has some great features but some features might make you wonder.

As far as looks are concerned Chris Svensson, Design Director for Ford Asia Pacific sums the design of the new Ford Territory fairly well:

“We worked hard to ensure the new Territory was an evolution of the original model and, through the use of Ford’s distinct design DNA, also gave a hint of the future,” Svensson said.

“To achieve this we applied Ford’s unique style philosophy: kinetic design.

ford-sz-territory-side

“Kinetic design comprises several specific elements, all of which are present in the new Territory. They are confident stance, dynamic lines, expressive form language, taut surfacing, bold graphics and great detailing.

“When you combine them they convey movement and athleticism. In other words, the vehicle looks like it is moving when standing still,” Svensson said.

“The overall visual effect of kinetic design is simple: in the case of the new Territory it communicates its dynamic capabilities and fun-to-drive spirit.”

ford-sz-territory-rear

Exterior
At the front, the new Ford Territory uses an all-new tri-plane front-end architecture. The shape of the main grille is one of the new Territory’s most noticeable updates. This larger, lower grille in a unique three-bar design connects with the slim-line treatment given to the upper grille opening, a feature which sees the famous Ford roundel now surrounded by its own elegant winged structure
.
New slim-line headlights with projector beam technology are another stand-out feature of the new Territory’s frontal styling. The top-of-the-range Titanium variant takes this a step further with the introduction of LED (Light-Emitting Diode) position lamps integrated into its redesigned front bumper. At the bottom of Territory’s new face is a U-formed lower chin skid plate.

The new Ford Territory also features a sculpted new bonnet and subtle flutes for the front guards. Bold wheel lips emphasise what Ford calls: “its athletic stance”.

A new C-pillar design smoothes the transition from front to rear while resurfaced door cladding and a lower rocker moulding combine to give Territory a lower and more “athletic stance”.

At the rear the new Ford Territory has sleek horizontal tail lights that wrap around the rear of the vehicle that create a seamless visual link to the rear of the vehicle. Connecting them is a new rear lift-gate appliqué and a redesigned bumper and new lower-level valence panel finish of the exterior’s redesign.

To further enhance the new look of the exterior Ford offers a range of locally designed wheels for the new Ford Territory. These will be available in diameters of 17 and 18 inches in model-specific designs.

ford-sz-territory-dash

Interior
Ford have completely redesigned the instrument panel that features a large touch screen display. The steering wheel is also new and frankly it looks as though the designers had an in-house competition to see how many controls they could add to the steering wheel.

ford-sz-territory-dashboard

By my count there are eight different buttons on the Titanium SZ steering wheel and two flappy paddles hiding behind those. In a world where less is more and simplicity is important eight different buttons on the steering wheel seems a little odd to me. Trying to find the right button in heavy traffic … or at high speed … might lead to some interesting situations.

ford-sz-territory-dashboard-2

The new Ford Territory now comes with what Ford has called the “Interior Command Centre” that provides front-seat occupants with simple-to-use controls for functions such as heating, ventilation and air conditioning. At the bottom of this new “Interior Command Centre” is an all-new storage area. This stylish and functional feature uses a smooth-action tambour door which adds to the interior’s equally smooth style.

And that’s all I can tell you about the new Ford Territory SZ because that’s all Ford has revealed so far … although there is a hint on the Ford website that the new Ford Territory will have a diesel engine as an option.

ford-sz-territory-interior

**All images are of the Ford Territory SZ Titanium variant

By | February 12th, 2011|Ford Australia|5 Comments

Ford Focus RS

ford-focus-rsIf you saw the fire-breathing Ford Focus RS on Top Gear last week and thought that you’d look pretty good in one of those then you better get down to your nearest Ford Dealer and get your order in because they’re coming to Australia … all 315 of them and that’s all there will be.

So if you happen to have $59,990 (plus onroad costs) and you want one you better get your skates on or you’re going to miss out.

You’ll miss out on one of the hottest little hatches that Ford ever been produced. The power, acceleration and handling in the previous Focus RS was outstanding and they’ve managed to do even better with the new Ford Focus RS

This Ford Focus RS this is powered by a turbocharged 2.5-litre five-cylinder Volvo engine that pumps out a whopping 224kW with peak torque of 440Nm coming in at just 2,300rpm. This powerful engine is coupled to a six-speed gearbox.

ford-focus-rs-side

To cope with all that power the new Focus RS is fitted with unique sports suspension, incorporating the patented Ford RevoKnuckle, along with a Quaife Automatic Torque Biasing Helical Limited Slip Differential, high-performance braking system and Tyre Deflation Detection System (DDS) for the 19-inch alloy wheels and bespoke Continental tyres.

Automotive Technology has a full description of the Ford RevoKnuckle … follow the link if you want to see how it all works.

front-suspension

On the inside, Focus RS has Recaro sports seats in partial leather trim, dual zone climate control air conditioning, rain sensing windscreen wipers, auto-dimming rear vision mirror and an eight-speaker Sony audio system with six-disc CD player and USB input facility for iPod/MP3 player integration.

ford-focus-rs-interior

Bluetooth hands-free with Voice Control system is also part of the equipment package, along with the Ford Key-Free System incorporating keyless entry and keyless start via the start/stop button.

ford-focus-rs-dashboard

And that’s all there is … there are no options … no model variations … you get just one package with a choice of green, blue or white but with all these specs what more could you ask for?

The first of the 315 Ford Focus RS will arrive in Australia in the next few days.

ford-focus-rs-rear

By | September 25th, 2010|Ford Australia|5 Comments

Falcon GTs for Sale

falcon-xw-gtIf, like me, you’ve ever had the urge to slip into the driver’s seat of classic Falcon GT you could have your chance this coming Monday … although you’re going to need a pretty healthy bank balance to make your dreams come true.

Falcon GT fanciers are spoiled for choice at Shannons Melbourne Autumn Classic Auction on Monday (March 15), with three high-performance Ford going under the hammer.

Classic GT enthusiasts will be drawn to a one-owner XW GT sedan that was delivered new through New Oakleigh Motors in May 1970.

The purchaser’s father was a test driver for Ford Australia at the time and after testing the car at the company’s Proving Ground near Geelong earmarked the Grecian Gold vehicle for his son to buy because of its exceptional performance.

Offered registered with its original black and white Victorian number plates, the GT has been modified to run on premium unleaded petrol and comes with a supply of parts required for normal servicing, as well as spare decals.

Presented in good condition, the car is expected to sell in the $90,000-$110,000 range.

falcon-xw-gt-couch

And to add further comfort to the deal, the vendor will through in a unique ‘couch’ shaped in fibreglass like the boot of an XW GT Falcon and featuring the same Grecian Gold and black trim colour combination of the real GT.

Buyers wanting the kudos of a Falcon GT combined with modern comforts and driving dynamics will be interested in the 1997 EL Falcon GT that is expected to sell for $22,000-$28,000.

falcon-el-gt

Number 202 of the scheduled 250 built, the ‘30th Anniversary Falcon GT’ was the first product of Ford Australia’s new high-performance partner, Tickford Vehicle Engineering.

Powered by a Windsor 5.0 litre V8 pumping out 200kW, the EL GT featured lowered and stiffened suspension, a full leather interior and assorted wings and scoops to ensure it could not be mistaken for anything else but a ‘GT’.

Pent-up demand and the limited build ensured the model was an instant sell-out, with new examples offered for sale at up to $20,000 above the $69,500 recommended retail price.

Despite its performance, the EL GT came fully loaded with creature comforts, such as climate control air and power-operated everything, including a sophisticated ‘Premium’ 250-watt sound system.

This one-owner vehicle was a daily driver for the vendor from 1997 until 2004, after which it was used sparingly as a weekend recreational vehicle. The odometer now shows 120,502km.

falcon-eb-xr8

An even more affordable alternative for GT buyers is a 1992 Falcon EB XR8 ‘Allan Moffat’ HO sedan that is expected to sell in the $16,000-$20,000 range.

This rare and potentially collectible Falcon started life as a Falcon S Pack sedan before being delivered to Phase Autos early in its life.

There, Wayne Draper installed a host of available options including an oil cooler, high flow fuel pump and radiator, vented and cross-drilled discs with GT pads, sports suspension and a mandrel bent exhaust system.

This EB-HO has also been fitted with a two-way electric sunroof, tinted windows, power steering, air conditioning and a MOMO steering wheel.
The personalised number plates HO 302 remain with the vehicle.

The three Falcons are amongst 52 cars and motorcycles and 20 items of automobilia in the Shannons Autumn Auction.

All lots can be viewed over the weekend from 9am-5-pm Saturday and 10am-4pm Sunday at Shannons Showroom, 321 Warrigal Road, Cheltenham.

By | March 12th, 2010|Ford Australia, News|Comments Off on Falcon GTs for Sale

Ford G6 Limited Edition Returns

ford-G6Ford has brought back their G6 Limited Edition in response to customer demand. The 2010 Ford G6 Limited Edition is identical in specs to the previous model so you’re getting a luxury model at a value-for-money price.

Compared to the standard G6 the Ford G6 Limited Edition comes with almost $4,000 dollars worth of additional interior equipment including side airbags, leather-detailed seat trim, leather-wrapped sports steering wheel with satin alloy audio and cruise control buttons, iPod* integration and Bluetooth® mobile phone integration.

On the outside the G6 Limited Edition gets 18-inch G Series alloy wheels, unique colour accent treatments on the upper and lower grilles, fog lamp bezels and rear bumper insert, and a ‘Limited Edition’ badge.

The Ford G6 Limited Edition also comes in a factory fitted LPG E-gas version that’s $2,000 dollars above the drive-away price of $36,990 for the petrol version.

By | February 2nd, 2010|Ford Australia, News|1 Comment

Ford Performance Vehicles and Allan Moffat

moffat-and-fpvFord Performance Vehicles (FPV) today announced the appointment of racing legend Allan Moffat as its official Ambassador.

Moffat will represent FPV at major events and in some exciting new programs throughout 2010, as Ford’s performance arm steps up its activities in the new decade.

The four-time Bathurst winner has a long history with the Ford brand, which started in the late ’60s as a factory team driver and culminated with the famous 1-2 Falcon hardtop team victory with Colin Bond at Mt Panorama in 1977.

“I am delighted to welcome Allan Moffat to our team,” FPV General Manager Rod Barrett says.

“Allan brings with him an unrivalled Ford heritage and enormous credibility with the history of performance Fords in Australia, and that has an obvious connect with our brand and our customers.”

“But more than that, Allan has a real feel for ‘performance cars’ and what performance enthusiasts value, and that adds further to his role as FPV’s roving Ambassador.”

Allan Moffat’s record has made him a motor racing icon in Australia.

Along with four Bathurst victories, he won the Sandown endurance race six times, was Australian Touring Car Champion four times, and won both the Australian Sports Sedan and Sports Car Championship titles.

Overseas Moffat won the Sebring 12 Hours in Florida, was Sports Car Club of America Central Division Champion, and was victorious in 500 kilometre races at Fuji (Japan), Monza (Italy) and Wellington (New Zealand).

He also took class honours in each of the international 24 hour races at Le Mans (France), Daytona (America) and Spa (Belgium).

Allan’s son James also has a strong Ford connection, racing a Falcon in the 2010 V8 Supercar Development Series.

“Ford is such a big part of my history, it is fantastic to be joining FPV in 2010,” Allan Moffat says.

“FPV’s products are fabulous … our racing cars didn’t perform or handle as well as these cars do … so I am proud to represent FPV in Australia, and look forward to working with Rod and his team.”

By | February 1st, 2010|Ford Australia, News|Comments Off on Ford Performance Vehicles and Allan Moffat

Ford Territory Scores Another Perfect ANCAP Rating

ford-territory-aThe five-star ANCAP safety rating applies to the entire Territory range from January 2010 production onwards, following the addition of a front passenger Beltminder™ as standard equipment.

The front passenger Beltminder™, along with the driver Beltminder™, reminds both front seat occupants to fasten their seatbelts once the vehicle begins to move.

“The Territory has maintained a reputation as one of the safest vehicles on Australian roads since it was first introduced in 2004,” said Ford Australia President and CEO, Marin Burela.

“It was the first locally-manufactured vehicle to be fitted with an electronic stability control system, as well as side curtain airbags and a reverse camera, while it also boasts an exceptionally strong passenger safety cell.

“This latest safety test result is further validation of the strength of Ford’s continual process of design and engineering improvement, which has also delivered Territory compliance with Euro IV emissions regulations in recent months.”

The addition of a front passenger Beltminder™ further bolsters Territory’s already extensive list of safety equipment, which includes dual-stage driver and front passenger airbags, side curtain airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and Traction Control.

By | January 28th, 2010|Ford Australia, News|1 Comment

The End of the Australian Designed Falcon

Should we be surprised by the news currently coming out of Detroit that Ford is likely to end production of an Australian designed Falcon?

Not really … as soon as Ford started talking about it’s One Ford programme the writing was on the wall for the Falcon. It’s not selling in huge numbers so why invest hundreds of millions of dollars in all the design work that goes into the production of a new model? It’s going to be much cheaper to just rebadge and swap driving positions in something like a Taurus.

It’s sad to see the Falcon disappear but Ford fans can take heart … you can bet GM are seriously thinking about doing something similar to the Holden Commodore.

By | January 12th, 2010|Ford Australia, News|Comments Off on The End of the Australian Designed Falcon

Ford Reduces Emissions and Improves Fuel Economy in the Falcon

BAXTFord’s commitment to continuous product enhancement continues to pay off, with two of the most popular Falcon sedans, the XR6 and G6E obtaining improvements in fuel economy and C02 emissions.

Effective from April 2009 production, the Falcon XR6 and G6E will now both return a combined fuel economy of 10.1L/100km and a CO2 emissions figure of 239g/km. This is a 0.1L improvement on fuel economy over the FG Falcon released last year and a 4g improvement in CO2 emissions.

Key contributors to the improved fuel efficiency on these two Falcon sedan models include a new, latest generation catalytic converter, a new engine calibration for improved cold start performance and a further optimized transmission calibration.

These improvements have been engineered without any degradation in the vehicle’s performance.

“The continuous process of ongoing engineering development by Ford of Australia has seen the FG Falcon benefit again,” says Mike Gibbon, Ford New Zealand passenger vehicle brand manager.

“Ford is committed to improving fuel efficiency and emissions levels in all their vehicles and not just when we launch a new model. It is something we continue to chip away at to ensure that we continue to help our customers reduce their operating costs.”

These improvements are available on FG Falcon XR6 and G6E sedans produced from 1 April 2009. They will be available in New Zealand from late April.

By | December 30th, 2009|Ford Australia, News|1 Comment

Ford Fiesta ECOnetic

Last month the Ford Fiesta ECOnetic won the title of the most fuel efficient vehicle in Australia at the Global Green Challenge when it returned an average fuel consumption of 3.1L/100km … a consumption rate that meant that it used less than 100 litres for the trip from Darwin to Adelaide.

On the run from Alice Springs to Coober Pedy the Fiesta ECOnetic did even better with a consumption figure of 2.9L/100km.

For the entire trip the ECOnetic’s emission rating was just 84.47 grams per kilometre.

the new Ford Fiesta Econetic

Next month the Ford Fiesta ECOnetic hits the showrooms but what can we expect in such a car? For a sub-compact it comes with a very credible list of features.

  • 1.6 litre Common Rail diesel engine with a Diesel Particulate Filter
  • 5 speed manual transmission
  • Driver and passenger airbags and a driver’s knee airbag as well as side head and thorax airbags
  • Dynamic Stability Control with emergency brake assist and traction control
  • ABS and electronic brakeforce distribution
  • Bluetooth with voice control
  • USB input
  • Green shift indicator
  • Airconditioning
  • Cruise control

And the only option is the paint scheme.

Image courtesy of Ford

By | November 6th, 2009|Ford Australia|Comments Off on Ford Fiesta ECOnetic

Ford Recalls Over 83,000 Ford Territory vehicles

Ford is looking to recall 83,534 non- turbo Ford Territory vehicles built between February 1, 2004 and December 31, 2008. These vehicles are at risk of developing a brake fluid leak that may reduce brake effectiveness.

Ford is contacting all known Territory model owners by mail and for further information you should see your local Ford dealer.

By | March 27th, 2009|Ford Australia|Comments Off on Ford Recalls Over 83,000 Ford Territory vehicles

Finally Some Good News for the Aussie Car Industry

For Australia have announced that they have now changed their minds about closing the engine plant in Geelong.

Not only will the plant stay open but Ford will invest $21 million to upgrade the plant to the point where its products will meet tough European standards.

By | November 20th, 2008|Ford Australia, General News|Comments Off on Finally Some Good News for the Aussie Car Industry

Ford Quality

A recent study (April 2008) done by RDA Group has found that Ford is in a statistical dead heat with Toyota and Honda for initial quality. The quarterly study measured customer feedback from drivers of Ford vehicles as well as competitive makes and models.

Of course the study just happened to be commissioned by Ford.

Perhaps this is a case where a second opinion, from someone not commissioned by Ford might be helpful.

By | October 15th, 2008|Ford Australia|Comments Off on Ford Quality