Falcon or Territory? Ford faces dilemma over sign-off car

Ford Falcon G6E with Ford Falcon XR6 Turbo

THE last Australian-made Ford will roll off the company’s Broadmeadows production line on October 7, 2016, yet Ford Australia is yet to decide what model will officially sign off more than 90 years of manufacturing.

Ford currently builds the Falcon and Territory in Australia, and has confirmed October 7 date as the final day of operations. Which of the two vehicles – and what whether it will be a sedan or a ute if the Falcon is chosen.

“We haven’t decided,” Ford Australia president and chief executive Graeme Whickman said.

“The last unit rolling off the line is going to be an important day for us. It will be a celebration within the organisation.

“Yes, there’ll be people interested externally, but part of the dignified and respectful manner of how we’re transitioning in this country is important to us.”

Ford -Territory -White -Top -SidejpgThe Territory could be the last Australian-produced Ford to roll off Ford's Broadmeadows production line.

Whickman also assured Wheels that supplies of the Falcon XR8, which has seen it outstrip its forecast 1200 total sales, aren’t likely to dry up ahead of the closure. “We’ve worked hard to get all the bits and pieces required – including obviously engines – and my expectation is that we will continue to have a limited supply all the way through,” he said.

Ford isn’t expected to produce a flood of limited edition Falcons that arch-rival Holden is tipped to offer. That’s despite rumours of a high-performance Falcon XR6 Turbo Sprint that’s expected to be powered by the 310kW version of the locally-built 4.0-litre turbo six-cylinder, previously used in the FPV F6. Whickman would not confirm or deny the high-performance XR6 when questioned about it.

The Ford boss was also quick to quash criticism that the company’s locally made products have been performing poorly, with its market share having fallen to 6.1 percent, down from 7.3 percent this time last year.

“We’ve been pleased with our Falcon and our Territory numbers; whilst it may not be publically known, we had a plan – we reset the base last year – and we’re sticking to that plan, and we quietly market to our Falcon fans, and we keep hitting our numbers.”

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  • Love them all, but a Ford ute was the first ute and should be the last. XR6 Turbo too, as Ford was first to make a 6 Cyl. Turbo available at an affordable price.
  • Callum is on the right track ... the last car has to be a Falcon variant and if the plan is to auction off the very last production vehicle - as was done with Fairlane and FPV GT-F - then it has to be something desirable, and that means it must be a Falcon XR8 sedan. I remember the final build Fairlane was a six-cylinder sedan that didn't quite reach $50K in an eBay charity auction in 2008 ... a seemingly unfortunate confirmation that the car had by then reached its 'use by date'.
  • There should be no question. It just has to be a falcon, simply for the heritage and all the different drives it gave us through its life.
  • It has to be a Falcon, XR8 with all the luxury bits from the G6 in bright red.
  • It should be the falcon ute. They built the first ute only fair their last car should be a ute.
  • No doubt it has to be Falcon, it's been away way longer than Territory. I would be disgusted if it was Territory.