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Ford Falcon Facts
As promised, Ford was given its own test track. Just west of Melbourne, the You Yangs was chosen as the location. Coarse surfaces, lumpy jumps and a nasty hairpin bend were created. It was a tortuous road designed to test a car’s dynamics.
While You Yangs was still being designed, the XP prototypes were tested at Eyre Peninsula.
XP Falcon(1965 - 1966)
In April 1965, two months after the XP Falcon was released, Ford marketing staged a very risky stunt. The plan was to run a durability trial using five standard XPs, travelling day and night for 8 days and clocking up 70 000 miles along the new You Yangs proving ground.
The dangerous and scary circuit was all curves and the drivers needed to average 70mph a lap. Tyres kept wearing out, and the drivers often lost control, slamming into boulders and brick walls; several of the cars rolled. The public was hooked and the event was featured every night on the news.
The cars successfully racked up the 70 000 miles in 8 3/4 days. They were bruised and battered but the mechanics still went like clockwork. The public was impressed, and the Falcon began to sell in large numbers. Suddenly, fleet buyers became interested again, and XP won Wheels Car of the Year.
Improvements included more changes to the front and rear suspension, steering and ride & handling. The body was strengthened and a new Borg Warner 3 speed automatic was introduced.
Visual changes consisted of a flatter bonnet, raised front fenders, a wrap around bumper and horizontal bar-type grille.
Inside, legroom was increased, the seats were widened and in the boot, the spare tyre was relocated, addressing complaints from earlier models.
In September 1965, the Fairmont name was born. Replacing the Futura sedan and the Squire, it was available as a sedan or wagon, to compete with Holden’s new Premier. Fairmont came with reclining bucket seats, the Super Pursuit engine with 3 speed auto, and front disc brakes, a first for an Australian built car.
XP Falcon Photos (photos are cropped, click to enlarge)
Ford XP Falcon
On Sale: February 1965 - September 1966
How do I know it's an XP? Grille has 11 vertical bars, front bumper wraps around, flatter bonnet without air scoop
Models available:
Falcon Deluxe:
Falcon Squire:
sedan, wagon, ute, van
sedan, wagon, ute, van, hardtop
sedan, hardtop
sedan, wagon
What’s new? Fairmont
Falcon Firsts: Wheels Car of the Year award, first Australian designed 3 speed auto, front disc brakes (on Fairmont)
Prices at introduction: Falcon sedan - £1075, Fairmont sedan - £1525
Total XPs built: 70998
Transmission: 3 speed manual, 2 speed auto, 3 speed auto
144 cubic inches (2.4L) 6 cyl
Bore and stroke: 3.5 x 2.5 inches
Power: 96bhp (72kW) at 4200rpm
Torque: 138lb-ft (187Nm) at 2000rpm
Pushrod overhead valve, 2 valves per cylinder
Fuel system: Single throat carburettor
Compression ratio: 8.7:1
Pursuit 170 cubic inches (2.8L) 6 cyl
Bore and stroke: 3.5 x 2.94 inches
Power: 111bhp (83kW) at 4400rpm
Torque: 156lb-ft (212Nm) at 2400rpm
Pushrod overhead valve, 2 valves per cylinder
Fuel system: Single throat carburettor
Compression ratio: 8.7:1
Super Pursuit 200 cubic inches (3.3L) 6 cyl
Bore and stroke: 3.6 x 3.13 inches
Power: 121bhp (90kW) at 4400rpm
Torque: 185lb-ft (251Nm) at 2400rpm
Pushrod overhead valve, 2 valves per cylinder
Fuel system: Single throat carburettor
Compression ratio: 8.7:1
Fuel consumption: 25 mpg (Falcon 200 manual sedan, Wheels magazine)
Performance (Falcon 200 sedan, 3 spd auto):
Top speeds in gears
1st: 41mph (66km/h)
2nd: 68mph (109km/h)
3rd: 93mph (150km/h)
0-60mph (0-97km/h): 14.6 seconds
Standing quarter mile (402m): 18.6 seconds
Independent with coil springs and hydraulic double acting shock absorbers, stabiliser bar
Live axle, semi-elliptic springs with hydraulic double acting shock absorbers
Hydraulic operation, 9 inch drums, 10.75 inch discs on Fairmont
Hydraulic operation, 9 inch drums
Steering: Recirculating ball
Wheels: Pressed steel disc wheels with safety rims
Tyres: 6.50 x 13 inch (Fairmont: 6.50 x 14)
Dimensions (sedan):
Length: 183.4 inches (4658mm)
Width: 70.1 inches (1781mm)
Height: 55.9 inches (1420mm)
Wheelbase: 109.5 inches (2781mm)
Front track: 55 inches (1397mm)
Rear track: 54.5 inches (1384mm)
Kerb weight: 2590lb (1175kg)
Turning circle: 37.7ft (11.5 m)
Fuel tank: 11.7 gallons (53.2 litres)
Boot space: 24.7 cubic feet (699.5 litres)
Interior dimensions (sedan):
Front headroom: 38.3 inches (973mm)
Rear headroom: 36.9 inches (909mm)
Front shoulder room: 55.4 inches (1407mm)
Rear shoulder room: 55 inches (1397mm)
Front hip room: 57.1 inches (1450mm)
Rear hip room: 56.8 inches (1443mm)
Front legroom: 41.8 inches (1060mm)
Rear legroom: 37.2 inches (945mm)
Awards: 1965 Wheels Car of the Year
Rivals: HD/HR Holden, Chrysler AP6/VC Valiant
XP Falcon Links (new window) Related pages
Early Falcon Club
FPV: 1961-66 XK-XL-XM-XP Falcon Utility
Emil’s 1966 XP Falcon hardtop
Grant’s 1966 XP Falcon hardtop
1965 XP Falcon convertible
XP Falcon - Your Friend in the Shed
FPV: 1965 XP Fairmont Super Pursuit 200
Falcon Facts: XM Falcon
Falcon Facts: XR Falcon
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