Oracle of Delphi

Ford Kills Plans to Export Aussie Falcon to States, Middle East

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Say you had control of a Ford production plant down in Oz. Would you build a muscular, V8-powered, rear-drive sedan — or a Focus? We know which one we’d pick (not the latter), but officials at Ford Australia had no choice. According to the Australian magazine Drive, Ford’s canceled plans to build their rear-drive Falcon in left-hand-drive form for export in favor of building the Focus down in Australia.

Before you start shipping petitions to Perth in protest, note that the decision had little to do with Ford Australia itself. Tom Gorman, president of Ford’s Australian wing, claims the decision came not from their ranks but from “mother Ford” herself. Funds previously secured from the Australian government to expand the facility for export production will still be used - albeit for ramping up Focus production.

Although Ford officials claimed the export program would have included bringing the next Falcon — codenamed “Orion” — to the U.S., the main target was actually the Middle East. Still, we wonder how seriously Ford contemplated the market, as Drive quotes Gorman, president of Ford Australia, as saying a left-hand drive version of the “Orion” hasn’t yet been developed.

Sad news, as we think a Falcon on these shores could be an interesting competitor to Pontiac’s Holden-sourced G8 and Dodge’s domestically-built Charger. The earliest we could see a rear-drive Falcon in North America would be around 2012, which reportedly will be designed as a global platform from square one.

Link: http://news.windingroad.com/body-stylesmar...es-middle-east/

Edited by Pontiac Custom-S
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One of the insiders help me out here. This is a serious question.

Why couldn't Ford have duplicated the tooling for the Falcon in the shut down Taurus plant in Atlanta? Why does the Falcon have to be built in Australia?

With the dollar the way it is, it may soon be more cost effective to build the cars here and then export them.

edit: Not that I'm a big fan of the Falcon. It still has that late 90s jelly bean styling.

Edited by Oldsmoboi
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You got to be kidding me? :o

I guess sarcasm is a tough to detect on the interweb :P

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I thought Ford had a credible rear wheel drive platform in the DEW98. Why hasn't this platform been updated, improved, and/or altered to be utilized in more applications? It underpinned the Lincoln LS and Ford Thunderbird (as well as the Jaguar S-Type) with an independent rear suspension and the current Mustang without IRS. It seems like a waste of money and resources to only use this platform for 4 products and let it fade away. Was the platform not flexible enough to use it on a wider scale? Did the platform have a terrible defect that prevented Ford from further utilizing it? Why do we have to wait on Australia for another 5 years to see another modern rear wheel drive platform for Ford's U.S. operations? :huh:

I do agree with Oldsmoboi. If the pictures displayed on the internet are accurate, the redesigned Falcon is not that great looking. I don't view losing the Falcon as a big loss. However, I do view losing a modern rear wheel drive platform for Ford's U.S. operations as a calamity. :o

Edited by cire
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So, what this really means is that Ford will be making a home designed version of the new Falcon architecture and build it here in North America. This is the same article we read a few years ago when we learned Zeta was not coming to the USA. History repeats itself. I think its all part of the plan.

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bringing the falcon here would have been incredibly stupid. It looked woefully behind the times and would not have filled Ford's portfolio for a desperately needed volume car.

why not bring the Interceptor to fruition here? That is a more productive idea.

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So, what this really means is that Ford will be making a home designed version of the new Falcon architecture and build it here in North America. This is the same article we read a few years ago when we learned Zeta was not coming to the USA. History repeats itself. I think its all part of the plan.

:smilewide:

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bringing the falcon here would have been incredibly stupid. It looked woefully behind the times and would not have filled Ford's portfolio for a desperately needed volume car.

why not bring the Interceptor to fruition here? That is a more productive idea.

That's because it's, what, 30 years old? It now has IRS and European suspension tuning from the specialists at Ford Europe, but it still shares a lot with the Falcon they were building in 1979. It has to, since the wagon and ute have the old leaf-spring bodies grafted onto the new front end.
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I thought Ford had a credible rear wheel drive platform in the DEW98. Why hasn't this platform been updated, improved, and/or altered to be utilized in more applications? It underpinned the Lincoln LS and Ford Thunderbird (as well as the Jaguar S-Type) with an independent rear suspension and the current Mustang without IRS. It seems like a waste of money and resources to only use this platform for 4 products and let it fade away. Was the platform not flexible enough to use it on a wider scale? Did the platform have a terrible defect that prevented Ford from further utilizing it? Why do we have to wait on Australia for another 5 years to see another modern rear wheel drive platform for Ford's U.S. operations? :huh:

I do agree with Oldsmoboi. If the pictures displayed on the internet are accurate, the redesigned Falcon is not that great looking. I don't view losing the Falcon as a big loss. However, I do view losing a modern rear wheel drive platform for Ford's U.S. operations as a calamity. :o

DEW98 was officially deemed to cost expensive to build for volume at a reasonable cost (for Ford or Mercury), my personal opinion is that Ford decision makers wanted to distance themselves from Nasser's plans after he left (and burned a few bridges on the way out the door). And the Mustang's DC2 is nothing like DEW, it may share like 1 floor panel but I don't even think it shares that. DC2 will take over as Ford's RWD volume chassis (eventually replacing the next Falcon's Orion chassis).
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That is stupid they'll regret this one too. Even if only 10,000 sold each year thatst extra sales for a struggling company and gets some excitment in the line-up.

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I think selling the car pictured above in the US would never fly. It just looks like Ford saw the GTO and said "Oh! Ya me too!" but 5 years too late.

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DEW98 was officially deemed to cost expensive to build for volume at a reasonable cost (for Ford or Mercury), my personal opinion is that Ford decision makers wanted to distance themselves from Nasser's plans after he left (and burned a few bridges on the way out the door). And the Mustang's DC2 is nothing like DEW, it may share like 1 floor panel but I don't even think it shares that. DC2 will take over as Ford's RWD volume chassis (eventually replacing the next Falcon's Orion chassis).

I did some research. You were right. The Mustang's D2C platform was "loosely based" on DEW98. It does share some components with DEW98 (as well as the C1 platform), but is considered a completely different platform. So that means Ford only used the DEW98 platform for 3 models (Lincoln LS, Jaguar S-Type, and Thunderbird). I still think it was a shame for Ford to spend that much money and time developing DEW98 to use it so little. What a waste.

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Ah, now don't forget the Jaguar XF

I thought the XF was on the new aluminum XJ chassis.

And cire is right that chassis was underutilized terribly. A compact RWD lincoln and LWB Ford would have increased volume considerably as well as making a Jag 2 seat vert (kinda like a supercharged Thunderbird with style) viable.

A shame Nasser's plans got tossed out w/ the bath water.

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the Huntsmen will still become the global platform - not DC2 - DC2 is limited in flexibility as it was developed solely for Mustang .. 2011--2012 will see return of RWD sedan to Ford and Lincoln in US. This was a bigger news for Middle East which currently gets the Crown Victoria, while it gets the Commodore .. given the AUD exchange rate - it simply was more profitable for Ford to keep selling the subpar Panthers over the AUS Falcons. The US import was always and "option" but no one saw it as a possibility - given the competition and the exchange rate, Ford would not even break even - and it does not have the luxury GM has - they cannot finance image turnaround on lossy models - they need profit makers.

So Ford's Global RWD is still on track, and the chance of US imports was always nonexistent, but AUS lost the chance to export to Middle East, which they wanted very much to increase volume.

PS: the global RWD will basically be Orion with Ford EU wiring / computers and US engines; and will be produced in US (or Canada) for most markets. It will span at least 2 Lincoln sedans, 1 Ford sedan and the Mustang. More is possible, but not yet fully on the plans. I personally would LOVE to see the Territory to make it over as Explorer --- that would be a great move from Ford .. for now the 2010 Explorer will be on the MKS platform, as will the all new 2010 Taurus. (the MKS platform is practically all new, even though Ford still calls it D3)

Igor

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