January 29, 2006

Horse 485 - Big Ol' Falcon



August 1977, this is one of the Falcons which in just 6 weeks time would pull off an historic 1-2 win for Ford in the Bathurst 1000. If you look at the old footage of racing Falcons of the 60s, 70s and 80s they always look so much bigger and nastier than the Toranas and Commodores they were up against. Then I found out something by accident.

The floorpan on the current 2006 BF Falcon is precisely the same as the XM of 1966. That's 40 years of continuos use on the same platform. The Falcon of today is exactly the same length and width as the ones of 40 years ago but something is distinctly different.

Back in the 1960s and 70s the Falcon was brought out here ad then developed long after the US and Canada had stopped. The 1969 model was the last built in North America and the XA was Australia's own. Somehow the syling cues didn't have to fit in with anything else anymore and so our Falcon became more agressive, bristling with scoops and flared wheel arches. In fact the XA saloon was the world's fastest four door car when it came out.

The XC was the basis for Mad Max's Interceptor and even to this day there are more of them being exported to America. Whether you like it or not, the Falcon had an air about it that if allowed would either come around to your house and rip your arms off, eat your children steal your thunder, rob from your grandma and then leave nothing but a smoking number 11 on the pavement.

The two door coupe probably took some cues from the Mach 1 Mustang, but somehow the Australian touch looks just that wee bit hungrier and faster. This is one of those cars I would get if money wasn't a problem and they were abundant; whether in Cobra or Super Roo variant, they looked ace then and just put the modern sanitised Falcon which was designed in a wind tunnel by computers to shame.

3 comments:

Katja said...

Heissss! Aaahhh, now that's the kind of car I would drive if I were a man. Since I'm a girl, I can't, it'd be like trying to wear a tie or fedora.

I fear they'll never again make cars that look so cool.

Anonymous said...

nice article, pity alot of it isnt accurate - you say that there is no change between xm and ba floorpans?? Untrue - many many changes have occurred - try bolting a watts link type diff into an XM - not only are there no mounts, the wheelbase is different - there are a zillion different examples of this - also XA was NOT fastest accel 4 door, that was the XY

Rollo said...

An XY-GTHO was tested by Modern Motor magazine at 229km/h.

Autocar in Britain compared the 300SEL 6.3 with the XA Falcon.
The 6.3 ran out to 234km/h and the XA despite only putting out 260 as opposed to +300bhp from the XY was tested at 237km/h.

BA came off the EA169 platform, which differs from 60/169 in that there are three bolt holes in the rear located almost 160mm away from a weld line.

Why do you want a Watts-Link with a leaf spring set for?