Australian sedan ranging from family car up to the sports and luxury models
Seen as a more luxuourious option over the Holden Commodore, many are used as Limousines
While it battles for domination over the Commodore, many would argue it comes off second best as the Holden Commodore holds the most wins in the Bathurst Motor Race, and usually holds higher sales figures and for the sport fans the Commodore has the better look and feel of a sports car
Is the cause of many dinner table arguments as the Holden vs Ford debate is seen as a bit of a religious following in Australia as you are either a Holden Man or a Ford Man
a choice of a bulletproof 4 litre straight six and 5.4 litre V8.
Holden fans hate them because they have always been faster and more reliable than the Commodore. The current turbo straight six Falcon will do the quarter mile in low 13's while the Commodore V6 can hardly get out of it's own way.
The Falcon was first built in 1960 based on the Ford Mustang. In 1967 the Falcon GT was released with the 289 Mustang V8 and went on to dominate racing in Australia reaching a height in 1971 with the release of the Ford Falcon GTHO Phase3 which was the fastest four door vehicle in the world and embarassed Holdens much smaller and lighter Toranas.
During the 70's the next generation of Falcons now available with a hardtop and the 250ci six that would become legendary later continued to dominate Holden especially with the locally built Cleveland V8 which urinated all over the Holden 308 V8.
In the 80's the fourth generation Falcon was released with a much lighter and better handling body and thankfully was still rear wheel drive though Ford US had tried to push them to become front wheel drive. Sadly the Cleveland V8 was dropped in 1982 to concentrate on the 250ci. six. The 250ci was heavily reworked now with a alloy crossflow head designed by Honda. The Falcon then went on to nearly send Holden broke as while Holden had gone cheap and simply made their Commodore smaller and kept the pollution gear choked engines without updating them Ford actually bothered investing in their cars so there became the situation in 1984 that the Falcon was bigger, faster, better handling AND more fuel efficient than the Commodore. Holden was so embarassed that they had to go begging to Nissan to use their Skyline RB30 in the Commodore so they could catch up to the Falcon.
In 1988 the fourth generation Falcon was released with this generation came the return of the V8 in an imported 5 litre Windsor from America, the upgrade of the straight six to overhead cam and a partnership with Tickford which would begin the legend of the XR6.
The XR6 was the creation of the hot six Falcon with greatly improved handling and a Tickford engineering head on the trusty Falcon straight six that offered an impressive 161kw in 1991 which was embarassingly only 4kw short of the V8. During the fourth generation Holden began to close the gap by again making the car large again and swapping the peaky Nissan six for the torquey 3.8L Buick V6. Knowing the dated Buick V6 could never match the hi tech OHC 4 litre Falcon six Holden matched the performance of the Falcon bysacrificing handling so as to make their car some 200 kilos lighter than the Falcon.
In 1998 the disasterous fifth generation AU Falcon was released. Ford North America had been pressuring Australia to scrap the Falcon and replace it with their crappy Taurus despite the fact the Falcon was extremely profitable and the Taurus was a market disaster in Australia being smaller, slower and front wheel drive. Ford Australia refused to kill the Falcon and Ford North America grudgingly accepted on the condition that they get to design the styling of the new Falcon. So the new Falcon got tosser "edge" styling. Despite the fifth generation Falcon being extremely well engineered with superb handling and a new upgraded OHC 4 litre six with variable cam timing producing an impressive 172kw especially considering Holdens SUPERCHARGED V6 produced 2kw less the styling repulsed buyers. Add to that a disasterous campaign at Bathurst at the continued use of the tired old 5 litre Windsor while Holden had gone to the imported Chevrolet 5.7 V8 and then something needed to be done quickly.
So in 2003 the brilliant sixth generation Falcon was released which so leapfrogged the Commodore that only now they are starting to catch up. The crappy tosser "edge" styling was kicked for a return to traditional muscular styling. The Windsor V8 was retird for the new BOSS V8. The Modular block is imported from America and combined with local components including a locally designed and built DOHC to produce an impressive 302kw from a 5.4L V8 compared to a peak of 250kw with a 5.6L Windsor Stroker V8 in the last generation Falcon. The biggest news though was the rise of the XR6 to the king of the Falcon range. The SOHC 4 litre six was heavily updated and now was DOHC with DIVCT in base model form giving an impressive 190kw compared to Holdens top of the line sport supercharged V6 which only put out 180kw with their base model putting out a laughable 154kw. Ford also introduced the XR6 Turbo and FPV Typhoon with a garett turbocharger and intercooler bolted to the new straight six. The FPV Typhoon easily showed 300kw+ during development but boost was wound back significantly to only 6psi so as not to embarass the V8 Falcons but still the Typhoon produces 270kw and an amazing 550nm of torque between 2000 and 5000rpm. Not only has the turbo Falcon put V8's to shame but has utterly obliterated the ricer scene. For 20 grand you can pick up a second hand XR6 Turbo and for 10 grand it will be running 11 second times. Already development ha shown 1000hp Turbo Falcons.
In 2008 the new Falcon is coming and seeing as the current Falcon is still competitive with the brand new Commodore it is set to bury Holden and the ricer boys.