January 17, 2007

Horse 705 - We've Already Got The Answer!

I found it interesting that the motor companies in America are really good at producing slightly different versions of the rest of the world's cars. I've written previously about the Chevrolet Malibu which is the Vectra; the Chev Cobalt is the Astra and Ford USA builds the Focus.

The venerable Crown Victoria in America has been around since 1979 and packs a 4.6L V8 under the hood; its main use is Police and Taxi work. The somewhat aging motor throws out 239bhp or 182kW. Enter my suggestion for a new motor car, or rather an old one... The Ford Falcon. Its 4.0L inline 6 chucks out 249bhp or 190kW in base trim, uses less fuel, puts out less emissions, is faster, accelerates harder and surprisingly has a smaller turning circle.

The scary thing about this is that the Falcon was originally an American car. So what went wrong?

Well nothing really. The Falcon in American eyes was rejected because it was seen as too small, but in Australia where European sensibilities saw the rise of the hatchback, the Falcon went from being Ford's staple car to their big car. As petrol prices have soared over the past few years, suddenly the car which was too small now looks just about right; with the bonus that we've been developing it since 1963.

So when the Falcon adopts the Orion platform c.2008, it could very well be the replacement to the Crown Vic. How funny would it be to see a 25,000 strong fleet of yellow Falcons in New York City? To Australian eyes, it would be just like Melbourne.

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