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Falcon confirmed to continue

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    Ford has confirmed that the next-generation Falcon has a role in the "One Ford" global structure and could share its underbody architecture with other cars like the rear-drive Mustang.

The longest running nameplate in Australian automotive history is safe ? for now.

Ford Australia chief, Marin Burela, fresh from the Detroit motor show, says the Falcon will remain a part of the local scene despite speculation that it was facing the end of the road as Ford moves to a global strategy.

Ford has confirmed that the next-generation Falcon has a role in the "One Ford" global structure and could share its underbody architecture with other cars like the rear-drive Mustang.  Arriving back in Australia early this week Burela attacked speculation that the Falcon was dead in the water.

"It was completely unwarranted," he says.  "We have been very vocal about our `One Ford' policy and the great things it has done for Australia to date.  There was nothing new that was said in Detroit that deserved the attention, particularly the negative attention that it received."  Burela says Ford Australia continues to take a lead role in engineering and design in the region and this will not change.

The Broadmeadows team are in the final development phase of a global medium pickup, called the T6, which will be sold in more than 100 countries.  "We're the engineering and design and development for that here in Australia and for the Figo hatch," he says.  "Our position on Falcon and the future it has in Australia really hasn't changed at all."

Burela says reports that the company will drop its four and five-speed gearboxes — and move to a six-speed automatic only — are premature.  "Sometimes I think that people read too much into things that are taking place around us," he says.  "We have had nothing but great feedback about the four-speed and five-speed. We have no immediate change in mind right now."

However, the four-speed could be phased out towards the end of the year when the Falcon gets a high-tech liquid-injection LPG system for its six-cylinder.  Burela says like all carmakers, Ford Australia would continue to make "any tweaks or changes to our lineup that are necessary".

"You continue to evolve your lineup to deliver the best possible combination of driving and finesse," he says.  After the car industry's global battering last year, Burela is optimistic about 2010.  "Coming off 2009 it gives us confidence," he says.

He says the Federal Government's stimulus package was timely "just as the global financial crisis was shaking confidence".  For 2010, the Ford executive sees the local market quiet in the first quarter but then pick up for the rest of the year.

"Our view is that the industry will be as strong, if not stronger," he says.  It will be a busy year for the blue oval brand with Falcon and Ford Performance Vehicle products getting mechanical and engine updates.

Falcon prototype mules are up and running with the new Ecoboost four-cylinder engine and Territory turbo-diesel, both of which arrive next year to compete against newer rivals.  Ford has used the Falcon nameplate on its large car since 1960.

Comments on this story

Displaying 3 of 13 comments

  • Nothing special about the Commodore, boring looks and no quality.

    dontcare of Sydney Posted on 26 March 2010 5:19pm
  • I buy the falcon for the power torque and comfort ride and handling its a far superior car to the commordore ive test driven both and there is no comparison my farther had holdens all his life i told him to test drive the falcon before he bought another commordore he did and he bought the falcon was a far better car i just hope the falcon production never stops a lot of people are agreeing with what im saying and we need another GTHO That smashes the opposition once again Steve Malzard WA

    STEPHEN C MALZARD of Glenforrest WA Posted on 11 February 2010 11:07am
  • The Falcon is a boat anchor... Let it die

    Jerry Fordson of Vic Posted on 08 February 2010 11:29am
  • I buy Falcon for the torque and the great driving experience under all conditions.It is great on long trips with plenty of room for passengers and luggage with no degree in space management needed to get everything in the boot.My BA 6 cyl Futura regularly gets no worse than 9.2 L/100K with 4 passengers and luggage while cruising at 110KPH.A V6 with less torque down low and FWD would not be on my shopping list. Barry of Sydney.

    Barry Ferguson Posted on 02 February 2010 3:03pm
  • It would be about time that Ford bought in an LPG engine that had some gusto. It's hard to enjoy being nice to the environment with LPG when even a bicycle is a threat at the traffic lights. That and no boot space due to spare tyre being in the way... And the 4spd auto in the FG is a boat anchor. It's clunky and very unpolished after one has driven the 6spd equivalent.

    Corey of Brisbane Posted on 02 February 2010 1:32pm
  • If the media are quick to shoot it down like they did the 380,ford put it straight to them drive the car for a week if your a reporter only the reporters that people listen to.Then say drive it before you comment and put it to there company and bosses so they have no say,then make there bosses make them do a report on this vehicle after of course,with ford doing a deal with the media bosses.Then only true facts on this iconic beast will be released.This iconic beast of Australian cars will be still selling strong when others have long gone,it has had its name and badge since 1960 and is still a proud carrier of its long heritage and proud long haul.The name in cars and people buy them goes back to even as far as the model t FORD.This FALCON,the beast of beast nothing like it to drive the GT FALCON SINCE ITS FIRST OFF THE PRODUCTION LINE HAS BEEN ONE OF AUSTRALIA'S ICONS,ON AND OFF THE RACE TRACK,stream lined and just so smooth and quick even the six with sequential shift,goes like I wont say the word at over 200kw and other models even quicker.This car is a delicious,smooth,sleek,gorgeous,and a beast from hell to drive just so quick and when you want to go it just doesn't go it FLIES

    andrew Posted on 02 February 2010 12:54pm
  • What will FPV do if Falcon goes FWD ? A FWD GTHO? I doubt it.......maybe FPV will be AWD?

    Rick Harris Posted on 30 January 2010 4:26pm
  • Only one mainstram media outlet (carsguide) printed the positive article from the Ford Exec this week, not long ago there where 10 outlets lining up to shoot down Ford, like they did with the 380, if anything the media is to blame for the incorrect press reported regarding the Falcon, quick to shaft an Australian icon!, think its un Australian!

    Ben of Melbourne Posted on 29 January 2010 9:44pm
  • I've bought a few Falcons now because I want RWD and torque, nothing to do with bias or anything. If the Falcon got a gutless V6 or went FWD, I wouldn't get one.

    Mr Neil of Canberra Posted on 29 January 2010 10:02am
  • Well done Ford...Great to hear.

    Wazza of South Aust Posted on 28 January 2010 7:29pm
  • Poor old Marin, he doesn't seem to know whether he is coming or going (pun intended). On another web site it was reported that he has been asking Australians whether they would buy a front-wheel-drive Falcon. He has said that the feedback to date has been mixed. As the headline to this article says, the longest running nameplate in Australian automotive history is safe ? for now.

    Howard Posted on 28 January 2010 6:03pm
  • I think the Falcon name is the longest continuously used name in the world. I may be wrong. Can't wait for a decent factory LPG system.

    shane doyle of adelaide Posted on 28 January 2010 5:25pm
  • A Falcon badge on a locally built Taurus does not a Falcon make. Lets hope that the RWD Mustang platform gets the nod.

    andrew Posted on 28 January 2010 5:07pm
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