Ford FG Falcon: First Look
By Feann Torr - 17/February/2008
2008 Ford FG Falcon
The new 2008 FG Falcon design gets
scalloped doors for more visual impact
Ford has improved cabin ergonomics
and as you can see from this photo the
interior of the G6E is easy on the eye
This upstanding Australian is the XR6 model,
which gets 17-inch alloys and sports body kit
The XR8 model gets 18-inch alloy wheels
and a 5.4-litre V8 engine that packs more
punch than the SS Commodore's 6.0-litre V8
The Sales Pitch
FG Falcon is all about refinement. Boasting a sophisticated new look,
progressive new interiors and more advanced engineering than you can
throw a spanner at, it's all about the refinement.
The 'FG' Name
While the Holden Commodore has been content to milk the
letter V for its model designations - VX, VY, VE etc - the Ford Falcon
has taken a less symmetric path.
the mid 1990s to today, we've seen EF, EL, AU, BA and BF
Falcons. Now you can add FG, which acknowledges the Fairmont and
- Feann Torr, Editor
Ford has scrapped the Futura and Fairmont models
for the new G Series - this is the G6E where the E
stands for 'European', reflected in the new styling
And this is the leather interior of the G6E
This is the G6 model, which gets less chrome
and no rear boot lid spoiler like the G6E models
We've seen this primary green extensively on
Holden's VE Ute - and now the XR8 gets it
These are the instruments from the Falcon
G6E Turbo. The FPV F6 versions get turbo
boost gauges underneath the tachometer
The XR6 Ute gets the same front end as the sedan
and Ford says the 1 tonne capacity will be back
This is the entry-level Ford FG Falcon XT
Melbourne, Australia —
The feeling of trepidation during any new car launch is significant,
but the first all-new Ford Falcon in 10 years, the car the company's
longterm Australian manufacturing future could hinge on, was immense.
It's been four years in the making, but the wait has been worth it.
Showing off an all-new look with a strong European influence, the eighth generation Falcon has finally spread its wings.
Ladies and gents, meet the FG Falcon which will be on sale in May.
with an all-new look, the new Falcon has boosted every aspect of
motoring - improved safety with stability control as standard on all
models, reverse cameras are offered on all models, the engines are more
efficient but more powerful at the same time, and new 5-speed
automatics replace the 4-speed cog swappers.
It's bigger, with more interior room, there's more technology involved, new suspension, and even an iPod jack.
all-new FG Falcon range represents another step forward for automotive
vehicle design in Australia," says Ford Australia's new president, Bill
"It is an exceptional large car package that
delivers outstanding performance, fuel efficiency, refinement and
safety to meet the needs of a wide variety of customers.
the first time in Falcon's history, the new model will come to market
with three distinct faces on the vehicle, offering both private and
fleet customers, and both sports and luxury customers, a new Falcon to
suit their lifestyle," Mr Osborne revealed.
It's true that there's also been some interesting changes to the model line-up.
are the Futura, Fairmont and Fairmont Ghia models, replaced with the
new G-Series Falcons including the G6, G6E, and G6E Turbo. Ford took a
gamble scrapping the historic Fairmont and Futura nameplates, but the
new G-Series could provide a fresh boost.
models has a similar look to the Ford Mondeo luxury models with lots of
chrome subtle design cues while the sporty XR models get the overt
styling, with spoilers, large wheels, and aggressive headlamps. Finally
the entry-level XT models also get their own look which sits somewhere
between the two.
The media had already been briefed on
the technical aspects of the new FG Falcon a couple of weeks prior -
with strict "we'll hunt you down and sacrifice you" embargoes - which
meant it was difficult to keep a lid on things.
the embargo date has passed, let me start by giving you my initial
impression upon seeing the first all-new Falcon in a decade: smart.
new design is best described as conservative with strong European
influences. It's not as wild looking as the new Commodore,
instead providing the new Falcon with a more sophisticated look
A sleeker front end with thinner
headlight clusters adheres to Ford 'kinetic' design ethos that was
pioneered in Europe, giving the FG Falcon a more serious, upmarket design.
says the car is about 90 per cent new, with a few carry over bits and
bobs, but as far as the design and sheet metal goes it's completely
With a new look that brings the Falcon close
in line with the European 'kinetic' design philosophy, the new model is
safer, more powerful, more frugal, and pretty much more everything
Some of my favourite aspects of
the new design are the new brake lights and the rear quarter panels,
which add a contemporary twist to the rear, while I thought the
horizontal motifs that along the bottom of the doors really
attract the eye by creating light and shadow.
the new models, the increased interior room makes itself felt,
particularly in the rear. From the drivers seat, the Falcon feels far
more advanced than previous models with a trendy and
intuitive centre console.
It also has a
perceptibly upmarket feel that is helped by the repositioning of the
main LCD screen to the top of the centre stack, and a more uniform HVAC
The handbrake and gear shifter are also much
higher than before which a good thing I think, improving ergonomics
without making the cabin feel cramped. The new LCD screens are mounted
higher and very large, while the steering wheel controls remain similar
(audio, cruise control).
An area that Ford has been keen
to improve with this new model is refinement. We'd love to say "it
feels refined on the road" but we won't be able to test it just
yet. Stay tuned for our first hands-on road test soon.
claims it's a quieter car with new double door seals that keep external
noises from intruding into the cabin, and everything from the
suspension setup to the engine operation has been refined to be more
responsive but also smoother.
Along with its chiselled
new look, the range of engines have been given significant upgrades and
of note for the performance brigade, the XR8 engines now have a neat
little gadget called the 'SAM'.
This semi active
muffler is borrowed from the Jaguar and Aston Martin models, and is a
pressure activated valve that basically improves the exhaust notewhen the engine revs beyond 2800rpm.
will be marketing the new FG Falcon as much more sophisticated beast,
something to rival the flood of European imports that buyers are
increasingly turning to.
But will this focus on
refinement work? Time will tell, but reducing the Falcon's fuel
consumption to below that of the Holden Commodore and close to the
4-cylinder Toyota Camry is a significant win for the new Falcon.
entry-level Falcon's use 10.1 litres of fuel for every 100km
on the combined cycle when equipped with the 6-speed auto, which trumps
Holden's 10.9L/100km and comes close to the 4-cylinder Camry's
As well as improved fuel economy thanks to
the re-engineered 6-cylinder engines, there's the new HMI to talk about
- the human machine interface.
The FG Falcon gets
has a new look interior featuring new LCD screens and new simplified
input systems that help improve the car-driver symbiosis. In other
words, more functionality, less confusion.
The new XR6
Turbo (manual) models also get a new two-stage launch system which
engages the turbo without needing to abuse the clutch.But first, the new stuff.
Ford has increased power and torque for all Falcon engines while reducing fuel consumption:
been some big gains in power and torque especially for the performance
models like the XR8 and XR6 Turbo, which essentially get the FPV
engines from the BF MkII models.
While Ford did show off
a couple of FPV models at the launch in Melbourne, it didn't
provide power and torque numbers, saying it would release them closer
to the FPV's launch in June.
Another major change to the
Falcon has been the adoption of a new front end suspension assembly,
which is some 22kg lighter than the previous system because it's made
from aluminium. Called a virtual pivot control link, the front
suspension is claimed to provide better handling while also improving
a more refined suspension system that couples with new shock
absorbers in a range of different stiffnesses - softer and more
compliant for entry and luxury models, and stiffer and more sporty for
In terms of its size, the FG
Ford Falcon is 25mm longer than its predecessor and together with more
intelligent packaging that means more interior space for all occupants.
Boot space has improved from 501 to 535 litres, making it best in class.
attention has been paid to improving ingress egress - getting in
and out of the cars. During the launch it was noticeably easier to get
into the back seats, and other aspects like visibility have also
been considered, and the A-pillar has been moved forward to improve
Ford's FG Falcon is wider than the BF model it replaces (track width has increased by 28mm at the front and 30mm
at the rear) which also improves interior space, with more head, hip
and shoulder room for front and rear passengers, and an extra 10mm leg room for rear seat passengers.
All told, the new Falcon represents a step forward for the vehicle
with improvements in power, economy, safety and refinement. It'll be on
the market by May with FPV models to follow in June, and should give
the Holden VE Commodore a good run for its money thanks to the
intriguing new front suspension system and new engines and gearboxes.
the coming weeks and months we'll bring you more reports on all the new
Falcon models, including the iconic XR6 Turbo which gets a new Garret
turbocharger, a bigger intercooler and some very interesting launch
personally very keen to try out the new systems on the XR6 Turbo, and
the new exhaust valve on the XR8 should also provide enthusiasts with
something new to check out.
We'll have the low down on the
new G-Series models, and we'll also look at the new FPV too, with
road tests of most models to follow.
leave, here is the full list of Ford FG Falcons and utes and a brief descriptor. You can also check out this article which lists the full model range and their features including sedans and utes.
Falcon XT: Base model
Falcon G6: Entry-level Luxury
Falcon G6E: High-level Luxury
Falcon G6E Turbo: High-level Sports Luxuxy
Falcon XR6: Entry-level Sports
Falcon XR6 Turbo: High-level Sports
Falcon XR8: High-level V8 Sports
Falcon Ute: Work horse
Falcon Ute R6: Sports Workhorse
Falcon Ute XR6: Sports
Falcon Ute XR6 Turbo: High-level Sports
Falcon Ute XR8: High-level V8 Sports
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