$37,235 – $56,235
Good: With excellent ride and handling, high levels of standard equipment the Falcon is a refined, proudly Australian-built rear-wheel drive sedan. The XR6 Turbo is brilliant.
Not so Good: Fuel consumption isn’t the greatest when compared to a number of diesel options on the market. The ‘common’ brand perception – blame the historically high number of Falcon’s being sold as fleet & taxi vehicles.
Design and Engineering
Good : The current shape Falcon was released in Australia April 2008 and received a number of tech changes along the way. In July 2011 the range was joined by a new ECO LPI variant that improved overall fuel consumption, later in the year the entire range received a facelift and massive price reductions across the board.
Changes to the design include: redesigned front bumper, a smaller upper grille and a larger lower grille, revised headlight and fog light assemblies.
Not so good : Although the Falcon range received a facelift in December 2011, you’d be hard pressed to see the difference, there were changes made to the front of the car but the rear remains unchanged since 2008.
Interior and Styling
Good : The centre console is of a sound design with all the controls in a logical layout. The eight-inch colour touchscreen found in mid and top spec models is vibrant and easy to use.
The well padded driver & front passenger seats are comfortable, sufficient space for five adults and a large boot (Non ECO LPI models) are also pluses.
Not so good : Entry level XT interior is relatively plain (with far too much grey!). The drivers seat is comfortable but doesn’t offer enough seat adjustment especially in sports models where it’s needed most. The EcoLPI model has a very cramped boot, because the gas tank is under the car the full size spare sits in the boot (we had to remove the spare wheel in order to make full use of the boot space).
Good : The inline six-cylinder loves to rev! The 5-speed auto (on entry to mid-level grades) may be missing a gear compared to a number of competitors; however don’t worry as this is one smooth gearbox, and the 6-speed auto on higher grades is even nicer again. XR6 Turbo is seriously fast (it’s significantly quicker than Ford’s V8 XR8 or Holden’s SS Commodore).
There is also the option of the 4.0-litre inline six-cylinder EcoLPi engine that runs solely on gas. The LPG engine manages 198kW of power and an impressive 409Nm of torque.
The EcoLPi engine is quite good and offers up plenty of performance (you’d hardly know its on gas).
Not so good : With the XR6 Turbo’s serious amount of performance Ford could afford to re-upgrade their already upgraded XR6 front brakes!
Ride and Handling
Good : Excellent handling on all grades (with the XR6 Turbo being our personal favourite – you may have gathered that by now, sorry if we harp on about it…) Overall, the Falcon has a firm ride, yet is never uncomfortable; the steering is also great on all grades. The luxury grade G6E is a very quiet car at highway speeds…
Not so good : However this is still a Large family-sized vehicle so don’t expect it to keep up with a Lotus Elise down a twisty mountain pass.
Buying and Owning
Good : 4.0-litre naturally aspirated engine has decent fuel economy for such a big vehicle and the EcoLPI features more power and torque. For a large family sedan the Ford Falcon range is great value for money.
Not so good : Low resale rating on entry-level grades – blame the fact that the vast majority of Falcons are government fleet buys and too many end up at auction three years later when it’s time to upgrade…