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Used Ford Falcon review: 2008-2011

EXPERT RATING
7
Take a tip: Go for a later model when you're out shopping for a G Series Falcon. New The G Series was a new range of sports luxury models Ford introduced with the FG Falcon in 2008. In effect it replaced the old luxury Futura/Fairmont/Fairmont Ghia but with greater emphasis on sportiness. The range comprised the G6,

Take a tip: Go for a later model when you're out shopping for a G Series Falcon.

New

The G Series was a new range of sports luxury models Ford introduced with the FG Falcon in 2008. In effect it replaced the old luxury Futura/Fairmont/Fairmont Ghia but with greater emphasis on sportiness.

The range comprised the G6, G6E and G6E Turbo, all sedans.

The G6 built on the XT, which anchored the FG range. Additional standard features included distinctive front and rear styling, front fog lamps, 17-inch alloy wheels, sports suspension and reversing sensors

Adding yet more features, the G6E had a unique grille, repeater indicators in the side mirrors, unique 17-inchers and, in the cabin, Bluetooth, premium audio with six-CD in-dash player, dual-zone auto aircon, leather seats, power driver's seat with memory, reversing camera and curtain airbags.

In the G6E Turbo, luxury combined with performance. The turbo six-cylinder was the thundering heart of the G6E Turbo and it rolled on 18-inch alloys. It added bootlid spoiler, iPod integration and bright headlamp bezels.

The FG range's base engine was a 4.0-litre six-cylinder with 195kW/391Nm — it had all the get up and go you could wish for and its relative thirst was not such a surprise for a big engine in a big car.

The ride smooth and quiet and the handling balanced and reassured

For those seeking better fuel efficiency, the dedicated LPG version wasn't as powerful (still with 156kW/371Nm) but was no slug when the lights went green.

The G6E Turbo with 270kW/533Nm was for anyone who wanted to win at the lights.

The base transmission in the G6 was a five-speed auto; if you went for the LPG engine option you got a four-speed, but if you opted for the G6E or the turbo you got a six-speed auto.

There was much to like about the G6 range when you hit the road. The engine was responsive, the ride smooth and quiet and the handling balanced and reassured.

Now

The question of build quality usually comes up when talk switches to the local brands.

There's a theory that goes something like this: don't buy the first model in a new car, wait until the update because they will have ironed out the bugs by then.

The engines are pretty much bulletproof; nothing really goes wrong with them

It's not a bad idea. The BF II, which preceded the FG was a pretty good thing, there wasn't a lot wrong with it. The FG was the first of the new model.

The engines are pretty much bulletproof; nothing really goes wrong with them. The only thing to be cautious about is the G6E Turbo, which could have suffered a hard life at the hands of a hoon.

A G6E Turbo is less likely to have been thrashed than an XR6 Turbo, but take a good look around the car for signs of a hard life anyway.

Transmissions can be a cause for concern with the FG. The five-speed can give trouble, so give it a good test drive and look for hesitation when shifting, clunking into gear etc.

The six-speed isn't immune from problems either; it is prone to clunking into gear heavily. There is a transmission calibration fix for it but it tends to rob the engine of a little power in order to soften the harshness.

Falcons have had problems with the transmission oil cooler failing, allowing coolant into the transmission, ultimately causing it to fail. A way around it is to fit an external cooler and bypass the factory item.

When test driving an FG listen for clunking in the rear end, which could indicate split diff bushes, a known problem.

Some owners also complain about the performance of the FG aircon, which isn't as effective as that in the BF.

LPG cars were recalled for a cracked brake booster check valve, which could affect the power assistance of the brakes.

Overall the FG is a well-built refined car that's sometimes let down by frustrating issues like those outlined above. It's perhaps best to avoid early cars; later ones tend to be better.

Smithy says

Refined, smooth large sedan has plenty going for it.

Owners say

Lindsay Cooper Our 2008 G6E has done 115,000km. The three-year extended warranty paid for itself when the CD player and the boot struts had to be replaced, and the rear IRS diff bushes split, all after the initial Ford warranty expired. Heavy on fuel in the city, the engine is quiet, responsive if required, and gets about 7.0L/100km in the country. We have used Ford's capped price servicing and the complimentary roadside assistance has been a bonus. The space-saver spare was replaced with a full-sized matching wheel.

Richard Heal I bought my G6E Turbo new in 2011 and two years later it was written off in a crash. I was absolutely thrilled with the way that it drove and performed. The total package of dynamics was perfect and that 4.0-litre turbo was wonderful. On a run up the Hume to Sydney the gearbox rarely shifted out of sixth gear and on most hills the engine started "humming" a little bit louder.

Rob Nolan I have a 2013 G6E bought with 65,000km. So far all is going well. This is my fourth Falcon, all have been reliable and overall costs have been fine. As far as I know it has the biggest towing capacity of the sedans, which is the attractive feature for towing my boat. I believe Falcons are grossly underrated.

Hamilton Saunders I am very happy with my 2010 Falcon G6E, which has covered 70,000km. It is comfortable and easily tows my 5-metre boat. Recently, I have had to replace the rear differential bushings ($800) and an air-conditioning unit ($1400). Apart from those expenditures the car has been very reliable and is still on original tyres and brakes.

Angus Fraser My G6E Turbo is still like new, which is a testament to Ford's build quality. Nothing has gone wrong with it, there's not a squeak or rattle in it. I'm rapt.

Nigel Best After owning Japanese imports for 10 years I decided to buy a G6E Turbo in 2009. The performance is great and there have been no problems worth noting.

Tim Walton I love my 2008 G6E Turbo, it has amazing power, is comfortable, has a huge boot and it looks great. But it hasn't been without its problems, including numerous electronic issues, the aircon leaked under the dash, the outside temp sensor failed a number of times and there was a heavy clunk in the driveline when shifting into first. I wouldn't buy another one.

 

Coming up

Do you own or have you owned a Nissan Tiida? Share your experience with other CarsGuide readers by sending your comments to Graham Smith at grah.smith@bigpond.com or write to CarsGuide, PO Box 4245, Sydney, NSW 2010.

Click here to see more Ford Falcon pricing and spec info.

Pricing

Year Price From Price To
2011 $6,160 $22,000
2010 $5,940 $21,340
2009 $5,170 $20,790
2008 $4,290 $20,240

View all Ford Falcon pricing and specifications

Pricing Guides

$8,860
Based on 356 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$2,999
Highest Price
$25,990

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
ES 4.0L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO $5,170 – 7,590 2008 Ford Falcon 2008 ES Pricing and Specs
ES (LPG) 4.0L, LPG, 4 SP AUTO $5,610 – 7,920 2008 Ford Falcon 2008 ES (LPG) Pricing and Specs
Futura 4.0L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO $3,950 – 4,990 2008 Ford Falcon 2008 Futura Pricing and Specs
Futura (LPG) 4.0L, LPG, 4 SP AUTO $6,050 – 8,580 2008 Ford Falcon 2008 Futura (LPG) Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
7
Graham Smith
Contributing Journalist

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