Ford Fairmont 2006 Review
It may be a familiar face, but there's nothing wrong with the underlying package – nothing that a nip here and tuck there can't cure.
The changes that Ford has introduced with the BF Mark II are subtle, but combined with attractive pricing and packaging make an appealing proposition. You'd be forgiven for not being able to pick the new car from the previous model.
However, Ford watchers will be able to spot the changes straight away.
Reflecting the rising cost of fuel, LPG, or E-Gas as Ford calls it, is now available virtually across the range apart from Fairlane and LTD.
Mark II features a new tapered bonnet, combined with a new grille and aggressive re-styled front bumper, sporty new headlights and revised rear bumpers on the sedan.
Most notable are the changes that have been made to Fairmont, which is looking decidedly more sporty these days.
Why bother, we wondered, when we saw that Fairmont was the thrust of Ford's new advertising campaign.
We thought everybody wanted a jellybean-coloured XR6 anyway. Apparently not and, after driving the new V8-powered Ghia (a competitor for Holden's Calais), we have to say we were immediately impressed.
It's quiet, it’s powerful and it's classy.
There's no rear wing for the boy racers but side skirts, a splash of chrome and the redesigned front grille give a sleeker, more sophisticated and sporty appearance.
Our test car was the top of the range V8-powered Fairmont Ghia priced from $51,490 – $7000 less than Calais V.
It leads the way with what Ford describes as a new Europeaninspired sports luxury exterior look.
It's highlighted by black boardered lights, redesigned chrome grille, jewelled fog lights, plus new front bumper finishes and new-look 17in sports alloys.
An exposed chrome exhaust, XR-style side skirts and rear bumper together with updated badging completes the package. The single overhead cam Barra 230 V8 engine delivers 230kW of power at 5350rpm and 500Nm of torque at 3500rpm.
Ghia gets the six-speed tipshift auto and dynamic stability control as standard.
Sports control blade rear suspension is also standard.
The smooth shifting, responsive and fast changing ZF transmission is a perfect match for the V8, delivering an excellent combination of power and economy.
The Ghia is a consumate performer, the only downside the intrusion of tyre noise on coarse bitumen.
Claimed fuel economy from the V8 is 13.2 litres/100km, but we were getting 12.4 – not bad for a V8.
Inside, a sporty new leather and alloy insert steering wheel complements the glossy black instrument console and black chrome instrument cluster with not a sign of wood in sight.
A range of dark and light colours serve to break up the interior trim, giving the interior a light, airy, inviting appearance.
Range and Specs
|(base)||5.4L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO||$2,650 – 4,999||2006 Ford Fairmont 2006 (base) Pricing and Specs|
|(LPG)||4.0L, LPG, 4 SP AUTO||$5,720 – 8,030||2006 Ford Fairmont 2006 (LPG) Pricing and Specs|
|Euro Sport||4.0L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO||$6,050 – 8,470||2006 Ford Fairmont 2006 Euro Sport Pricing and Specs|
|Ghia||4.0L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO||$2,950 – 8,999||2006 Ford Fairmont 2006 Ghia Pricing and Specs|
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