HSV GTS auto 2014 review
We had a run in the wild Walkinshaw Performance supercharged V8 Commodore a few years back and it was a mind bending experience as well as chassis bending.
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We turn the spotlight on the car world's newest and brightest stars as we ask the questions to which you want the answers. But there's only one question that really needs answering -- would you buy one?
WHAT IS IT?
The ultimate Falcon GT and the last to come out of Ford Performance Vehicles which was recently brought back into the fold. From now on, they come off the same assembly line as other Falcons at Broadmeadows.
Wait for it . . . $76,990. That's a lot of dosh for a car that doesn't even get power seats, let alone a driver's window with auto up. The question is . . . does the performance alone justify the price?
WHAT ARE COMPETITORS?
HSV's GTS and to a lesser extent Chrysler's SRT8 300. After that you can add in virtually anything that's fast and attractive.
WHAT'S UNDER THE BONNET?
5.0-litre supercharged V8, with 335kW of power and 570Nm of torque. RSPEC features recalibrated suspension, new wider 9-inch rears with 275/35 R19 Dunlop Sports Maxx tyres and, in an FPV first Launch Control.
HOW DOES IT GO?
A sleeping beast waiting to be stirred. Punch the accelerator and thing unwinds like a big cat, with a roar and plenty of sound effects from the Harrop supercharger.
IS IT ECONOMICAL?
Hardly. Most of our time was spent travelling up and down the motorway, with an all too brief session stretching its legs on some twisty back roads. Rated at 13.7 litres/100km we were getting 14.8 at the end of 500km it takes premium too.
IS IT GREEN?
Gets 3 out of 5 stars from the Govt's Green Vehicle Guide (Prius gets 5).
IS IT SAFE?
No probs. Just like the Falcon it gets a maximum five stars, with all the same safety gear including electronic traction and stability control.
IS IT COMFORTABLE?
It's a Falcon and that means yes. But little has been done to isolate the driver from the noise, vibration and harshness that comes with car like this it wears you down after a while.
WHAT'S IT LIKE TO DRIVE?
In black with red highlights including red wheels it looks simply amazing and attracts plenty of attention. Other drivers also pay the car plenty of respect too, moving out of the way without waiting to be asked. The handling in this model is superb, with plenty of grip in corners that inspires confidence.
IS IT VALUE FOR MONEY?
Not really. This kind of money puts you behind the wheel of plenty of other cars, but arguably none with the same kind of appeal.
WOULD WE BUY ONE?
They'll be talking about cars like this in reverent terms in years to come. The environment just can't sustain them anymore, so if you want one you'd better get in quick. Something to tell your grand kids about.
FPV GT RSPEC Limited Edition
Price: from $76,990
Warranty: 3 years/100,000km
Crash rating: 5-star ANCAP
Engine: 5.0-litre 8-cyl, 335kW/570Nm
Transmission: 6-speed auto; 6-speed manual RWD
Dimensions: 4970mm (L), 1868mm (W), 1453mm (H)
Thirst: 13.7L/100km 324g/km CO2
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