A brief tale from down under . . . . Good old Blighty has always had a connection with the land down under in the early days we boosted its population with, well in today’s terms would be called undesirables and how did the Australians repay us . They in return subjected us to Rolf Harris, Skippy, Dame Edna to name a few then there is the soaps but one little gem went almost unnoticed here in the UK, that was the Ford Falcon XD.
The Ford Falcon was first introduced in 1960 so next year sees it enjoying its half centaury not bad eh!! It was the XK model that starts our little history tour. Ford Australia used to build the Zephyr in kit form supplied from Dagenham and it took the decision to build a car from the ground up so on a trip to the USA in the late 50s they were shown a mock up of the Falcon being built for the Canadian and USA markets and decided that this model was the car for Australia.
The Falcon made its entry into the world of motoring with the XK model in September 1960 and was billed as a compact car. It is surprising to note that the Falcon has been around in Oz since before the colour TV the Jumbo jet and the Royal Opera House . . . .
Up till 1971 the Falcon had a US equivalent but this all changed with the XA which was totally Australian and only available in RHD. The 70s produced some classic designs with the XB and XC models which featured all wheel disc brakes and possibly the most famous Falcon model the Cobra which featured in the racing scene down under.
The Ford Falcoln XD [named project Blackwood] was launched in March 1979. It was the first car to be designed in Australia from a clean piece of paper. It also featured in its design some innovative ideas including a plastic fuel tank this model is significant due to its resemblance of our own Mk2 Ford Granada.
It was slightly larger than the European Granada and slightly less luxurious but it featured the model that I always thought would do well in the UK the UTE . . . . It was produced between 1979 and 1982 a total of 197,293 were produced in various guises Including GL Sedan and Wagon Ute and Van.
Power was provided by a base 3.3 6cyl a 4.1 6cyl 5.0 and 5.8 V8 they also had steering boxes and rear leaf springs.
Some pictures of a Falcon Police car, taken by 'yours truly' webmaster, at the MOTAT transport museum in Auckland, New Zealand 2009.
And finally, pictures of a 2 door Mk2 2.8 GLS pictured in Albany, North Shore, Auckland, New Zealand 2013