2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review

Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review & Road Test

Is this beast of burden a dying breed?

Model Tested:

  • 2008 Ford BF MkIII Falcon XT Wagon 4.0-litre, six- cylinder auto – $37,720 (RRP)

Options:

  • Metallic Paint $400 (Fitted); Side Airbags $300 (Fitted); Six CD Player $700 (Fitted); Rear Power Windows $470 (Fitted); Rear Parking Sensors $515; Heavy Duty Suspension $350; Limited Slip Differential $400; 16″ Alloy Wheels $500 (Fitted); Cargo Blind $150 (Fitted); Roof Rails $210 (Fitted); Power Adjusting Pedals $250; Dedicated LPG (E-Gas) $1400

Power, Practicality, Payload, High Beam
Dated Looks, Handling, Four-Speed Auto

CarAdvice Rating:

2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review

- by Matt Brogan

In what has essentially become a one horse race, Falcon is now the only remaining ‘big six’ rear-drive wagon available on the Australian market. Sure Holden has the sexy new Sportswagon, but with diminished cargo area and load capacity (due to its sedan origins) it’s better suited to family buyers leaving the heavy hauling, beast of burden, Falcon out on its lonesome.

This isn’t a bad thing, in fact for Ford it’s pretty much a coup d’état with fleet and business buyers now presented with very little choice in matching size, payload, price and running costs anywhere else in the market place.

Not yet updated to the ‘kinetic’ FG shape, this third series Falcon wagon is the final refinement of the BF model and as such has received only minor cosmetic and mechanical improvements over the predecessor which include ESP (available on petrol models only), Flip Key, Satin Alloy Accents on the front grille surround, ‘Warm Charcoal’ carpet, Goodyear Eagle Excellence tyres and Mk III badging.

Available in five-seat XT specification only, the wagon is offered exclusively with a 4.0-litre, six-cylinder engine and four-speed automatic transmission combo, albeit in petrol or dedicated E-Gas (LPG) guise.

2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review

Delivering 190kW at 5250rpm and 383Nm from just 2500rpm (156kW/370Nm for E-Gas) the in-line 4.0-litre six certainly has the might to lug its fair share of kit and with an impressive 1254 litre cargo area (to window height – seats up) and a braked towing capacity of up to 2300kg when fitted with a transmission cooler, hauling your gear around couldn’t be easier.

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To further improve its carrying capacity Falcon offers 60:40 flat fold rear seats, the option of Heavy Duty rear suspension to increase payload from 500 to 560kg and a Limited Slip Differential for better power delivery to the rear wheels, especially in wet weather and/or when towing.

The trusty old four-speed automatic is a bit of a dog by more modern standards and lacks the refinement of the FG’s standard five-speeder yet somehow still manages to get the job done. There’s quite a bit of drive line vibration under heavy acceleration (or when under load) and the gap from 3rd to 4th is a big one, especially on kick down. But despite these short comings semi-decent fuel economy can still be achieved through careful driving to be within spitting distance of the combined ADR claimed mark of 10.7 litres per 100km.

2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review

Handling is rather agricultural with a washy front end doing nothing to compliment the stiffly sprung leaf rear. Steering feel, whilst certainly present, becomes rather vague with any real weight on board, and overall isn’t what I’d call reassuring, especially with a rear full of snow boards and four blokes en route to Mt Buller. Perhaps the only up side is that so long as you don’t over do it cornering is at least capable, though a fast swerve to dodge a kangaroo lead me to wonder how the unprepared might fair. Lucky for them, ESP is now on board.

Inside things are much the same as they were in BFII, although the darker carpet seems to show dirt a little less. There’s plentiful rear leg space, adequate comfort levels and a durable feel to most surfaces meaning the utility of the vehicle’s application will certain not prove an issue come clean up time. That said I’m not a huge fan of the driving position which does feel a little cosy and the urethane steering wheel is unpleasant on hot days or long trips.

A little noise is evident from up back, as you’d expect from a large rear drive wagon, but considering the car’s open plan bulk, it’s really not too bad. Creature comforts are plain but practical and when you consider this is about as basic as the Falcon range gets, the list of included features is quite acceptable.

Trip computer, cruise control, power mirrors, air-conditioning, power steering, single CD tuner, steering wheel mounted cruise and audio controls, remote central locking, auto headlamps (with possibly the best high beam lamps of any car – ever), power windows and a full size steel rim spare rounding out the deal.

2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review

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One thing I did note is that the power window switches and steering wheel controls don’t illuminate at night, which is a little tricky at the booze bus. There’s a few odds and ends I’d really like to have seen included as standard too like Bluetooth, a cargo cover and roof rails but fortunately these are offered as an option for a bargain price.

Falcon XT shown in ‘Ego’ prestige (metallic) paint

Given the XT is essentially a work vehicle steel mesh or perspex type cargo barriers are available at an additional charge (approximately $400 and $600 respectively – dealer fit) meaning OH&S requirements can be met without stress. ABS, EBD, ESP and TCS are all included standard and along with dual front and (optional) side airbags, it’s not hard to see how this Falcon achieved a four star ANCAP rating.

With enough class and features that a family buyer needn’t feel hard done by, and with the E-Gas model offering better fuel economy dollar for dollar than a small petrol hatch, a big family no longer means a big fuel bill – well worth considering given the state of petrol prices.

2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review
2008 Ford Falcon XT Wagon Review

So yes, it’s a basic unit and sure there are prettier cars out there for the same money, but when you consider the vehicle’s purpose and practicality, add up the running costs and consider just how much it takes to break one of these things, the Falcon wagon is pretty hard to look past.

CarAdvice Overall Rating:
How does it Drive:
How does it Look:
How does it Go:

 

Specifications:

  • Engine: 3984cc DOHC Six-Cylinder, 24-Valve
  • Power: 190kW @ 5250rpm
  • Torque: 383Nm @ 2500rpm
  • Transmission: Four-Speed Automatic
  • Brakes: Four Wheel Disc with ABS & EBD
  • Driven Wheels: Rear
  • Fuel Type: 91 RON Unleaded
  • Fuel Tank Capacity: 68 litres
  • Fuel Consumption: 10.7 litres/100km (ADR)
  • ANCAP Rating: Four Stars
  • Safety: ESP; Front & Side (Opt) Airbags; TCS
  • Service Interval: 12 month/15,000km
  • Spare Wheel: 16” Steel
  • Turning Circle: 11.3 metres
  • Towing Capacity: 2300kg (Braked)
  • Warranty: 3 year/100,000km
  • Weight: 1684kg (Tare)
  • Wheels: Steel 16 x 6.5”

Road Test the Rivals:

  • Holden Omega Sportwagon $37,790 (RRP)



  • Iamthestig

    Anyone want to guess on resale value % on this after 12 months – 60%, or lower ?

    Not a sensible purchase for any private buyer but I guess there won’t be many (or any ?) of those !

    Way outdated…

    • George

      The Falcon Station Wagon shows its real worth when we going on Holidays.
      Space, economy, effortless cruising

      I drive an AU II SW, just done over 200k.
      It is a unique 6 seater, column shift auto.
      On Holidays fully loaded with kitchen sink 5 people on board it can do 1000 km’s on the open road (standard unleaded). My friends couldn’t believe it until they travelled with us to Port Stephens (from Melbourne)

  • Tom

    It’s still more a fleet car, because of the rear load room

    Most private buyers would get a sv6 sportswagon

    • ford owner

      no you wouldn’t buy an sv6 sportswagon the room in them is beyond crap. it is a comadore hatch … waste of time. i know 5 other families and i have this car because they have kids and travel and can tow and has heaps of room and power and practicality and they are basically as good as if not better then the falcon

  • acfsambo

    Ford are definitely aiming this at trades men and businesses. Like they have done with the FG ute.

  • The Axe

    I disagree with the resale comment. There aren’t any other decent load carrying wagons out there, so considering that it’s resale will be better than it has been.
    And these things would be bought for work not resale..

  • Pat E

    Agree with Axe, this car isn’t being marketed to Retail buyers, if it was it would’ve recieved the FG look. Retail buyers are still looking at Territory in the ford range, or something much smaller than a large wagon

  • alec

    Let me say first I am a Ford Fan, and I would have loved (and have been waiting for 5 years)to see a wagon similar to Holdens Sportwagon. The performance of a sedan, practicality of a wagon. I even considered building my own BA XR6 wagon.

    But I have had the long time view that Ford needs 2 wagons.

    One for the Private Buyer, a sport wagon like Holdens. If it has to be the Mondeo, then so be it. I would prefer rear wheel drive, but the mondeo looked the goods. Let it have more desirable styling, better handling, better image.

    And a wagon for the Fleets/Taxis.Ford could & has continued to build the current wagon with minimal developement costs & maximum profit. But maybe they should change the name. Don’t call it a falcon. Let it be known that this is purely for Fleets/Taxis. This wagon is the perfect platform and why they aren’t used more for taxi’s is beyond me (second hand price & availabilty is obvious reason)

    Save the Falcon name and change the image. that is afterall what Ford are trying to do.

  • alec

    Basically what I’m saying is market 2 different wagons for 2 different purposes.
    In this day when everyone is looking for versatility, the new age wagon will be the new hero, alongside the king-cab ute.

    It won’t cost Ford any extra to continue building the current BF wagon for commercial buyers. The developement costs have been recovered already. Just call it something different and make it cheap so Taxi buyers didn’t use second hand sedans.

    Imagine if the Falcon sedan never had to be seen as a Yellow Taxi again. It would do wonders for its image.

  • alec

    Build the old wagon alongside a new age Falcon Sportwagon!!

  • Carl

    Depreciation is pretty bad on the first year, I’ve recently bought a 10 month old 2007 E-gas with 16,000Ks to use as the family TAXI and payed $25,000 for it!!

    There aren’t to many around but if you are patient you can pick up a bit of a bargain for what is a BIG, very comfortable, reliable and cheap as chips to run workhorse/family taxi!!!

    Oh and expect to start paying a premium for second hand E-gas Falcons as depreciation is NOW less than the Petrol version.

  • Jimbo

    Hmmm….I’ll have a 125kw Diesel Mondeo Wagon over this any day. It will likely have a comparable size cargo capacity or if its anything like the sedan it will be bigger. Also it will be more frugal, similar performance, better handling and probably cheaper with a better resale.

    I know my attitude does not help the Ford workers in Australia. But when it is my hard earned being spent, at the end of the day the Mondeo is far more attractive.

    Ford really should have made this more like the sports wagon!

  • Adrian

    Good on you for testing a basic wagon. When was the last time anyone has seen a traditional Commodore or Falcon wagon tested in other media (aside from the new Commodore wagon)? If I wanted to buy a Veyron I could probably find hundreds of road tests, but try and find another recent test of a Falcon wagon.

  • Frugal One

    Good strong Aussie workhorse, now unique.

    It’s this or say a 1 tonner van…..You can see its worth the money, but yeah resale = $20k+ tear up after 2 years.

    Front doors foward is a dead ringer of my BF11 Ute.

    HUGE LPG tanks, 130L [via overfill] good for 900km!

    Great vehicle really…

    Cheers

    F-0

  • Bret

    A couple of points:
    1. “Iamthestig Says:
    Not a sensible purchase for any private buyer but I guess there won’t be many (or any ?) of those !”

    And 9/10 of those “depreciated” fleet cast-offs will be bought by private buyers for family cars.

    2. The Commodore Sportwagon is not smaller than this because it uses the “sedan wheelbase”. Everyone seems to forget that the VE grew in length considerably over the VZ. In fact VE short wheelbase is less than 1 inch shorter than VZ longwheelbase.
    Holden themselves have admitted that building the Sprtwagon on the long wheelbase would only have added to the rear legroom, not the cargo area.

  • macca

    I’m really surprised they couldnt have updated the ICC unit to a full screen as in Fairmonts of the BF. Its not like they wont’ have spares floating around. Would’ve given the base look a bit of a lift.

  • Bret

    Macca,
    Just like rear power windows, its an “option”.

  • Adam (aka Mada)

    Bret…

    You are correct, but…

    The new VE wagon has a far smaller load space then the older BF111 wagon.

  • Carl

    Yes the sports wagon is very short…..almost looks like a hatch back!!

    It won’t suit everyone…..still looks pretty good anyway.

  • Bret

    Adam, that was the point I was trying to make, Holden have downsized the load area hugely, but it has little, if any to do with the “short” wheelbase.

  • Glen

    Ford don’t need a Sportswagon because they have the Territory. Its a different market I agree but the Territory was built for Private buyers and the Falcon wagon is now for Fleet.

  • Andrew M

    well i did learn something,

    i always thought cargo area was floor to roof.
    apparently not hey?

    whats the point of only counting to window height?
    it would almost give a false reading.

    if you count to the roof, the commy sports wagon would fare even worse on the space scale.

    i agree with most that has been said……

    im not really bothered that an update hasnt come yet.
    i was never going to by one anyway.
    let it be for fleets i say. smart move for ford. no way would they be able afford 2 wagon platforms, thats just silly.
    even toyota, (the king of wrapping up fleet deals) couldnt justify keeping the corolla or camry wagon.

    i honestly doubt a fleet magnet and a family wagon would have proven beneficial. i highly doubt they would have had the sales to make it worth while especially when they already have the much better option in the territory for the family buyers.

    the word was holden wouldnt have built the sports wagon if ford was going to build a new wagon.
    now that they each have their own target audience rather than targeting the same, both ford AND Holden will be better off for this nil FG wagon update

  • Pablo

    I had a BAII Wagon on loan whilst I was having my FG’s first service done. Forgot how well these things go.

  • Andrew M

    Pablo,
    i have also had a wagon service loaner before. (BA11)

    they do actually dig in for what should be a square on wheels.
    being a service loaner i really tried it out too :)
    if you know what i mean ;)

    they are still a pretty tidy wagon, its just the rear end thats gotten a little bit “yesterdays hero”

  • Gibbo

    Yes it is a pricticle work horse, and one could argue that if you want a more comfortable, better looking family wagon from Ford then buy a Territoy, the rear wheel drive ones aren’t that much more expensive than a Falcon wagon and you do get independant rear suspension with a Territory. Having said that I think it is time Ford updated their station wagon, go and park a XD wagon next to a EA wagon and that next to a AU/BA/BF and there aren’t all that many exterior differences, yes the front ends are different and the interiors are very different but from the B pillar back the 3 generations are just about identicle, they all share the same basic body shape and same rear suspension and I know some people will argue the point “if it ain’t broke, dont fix it, but I think there is some thing Ford can do to modernise the ageing body shape of their Falcon wagon with out comprimising practacality.

  • Capri_XR2

    the under pinnings of the BF mkII XR6 ute under this, makes a sports wagon to me
    A no brainer ford, the R&D is done!

  • Richo

    This site never stops amazing me at how it can turn ANYTHING into a positive Ford deal.. i mean seriously how can anyone rate this a better car then the holden sportswagon? Come on lets get real here! Most sales reps will easily be able to fit their stuff in the back of a sportswagon no drama’s, the only types who won’t be able to is tradies who rarely buy wagons anyway, they buy utes and vans. I mean geez holden sold the VZ wagon alongside the VE sedan for quite a while and hey! NO ONE BOUGHT ONE! So why would it be any different for ford with the BF wagon? Simple answer is that it won’t be!

    Holden have a better product here, no if’s but’s or questions about it. This is one debate you ford blokes CANNOT win so for goodness sakes stop making yourselfs look like fools trying to justify how this is a better product then what holden is offering. At the end of the day what do you think will sell better? the VE sportswagon or a BF wagon? Yep thought so..

  • fangios

    I am an electronics technician doing 40,000km a year, and currently driving a 2003 TL magna duel fuel. I have the wagon loaded up with equipment everyday. I need a replacement for the excellent magna with my priorities being economical to run, space, and equipment level.
    It is sad we have lost the good wagons.
    My preference would have been the VE sportswagon for style and equipment, but unfortunately the space reduction and no LPG availability has counted it out. BFIII falcon egas was next, but the car is so poorly equipped, and the dealers aren’t willing to discount on the relatively high retail price or give a good trade in, so I have signed up on a new Nissan X-trail – diesel! Picking it up Friday, can’t wait!

  • Glen

    Richo the BF3 Wagon is now aimed at an entirely different market to the Holden sportswagon. The article simply states that for a fleet car, which 90% of sales would be for, its damn good, a much better product than the sportswagon in that regard. The biggest buyer’s of the Falcon wagon is Telstra & Optus because of the extra security the wagon had over the ute and the availability of LPG. Whereas the Sporswagon would suit the private sector much better for handling and equipment levels. Its all relative. And as said before the Territory is aimed squarely at Private buyers from Ford.

  • Carl

    Richo, i don’t see many people saying the OLD Falcon wagon is better than the Sportswagon? Just that the Holden is smaller and with no LPG will not suit everyone!

    So don’t try and pick a fight where there isn’t one!……having said that later this year a little thing called the Mondeo wagon will appear and then most of us will be glad to debate the pros and cons of that one compared to your precious LITTLE hatchback/”stortswagon”

    Cheers!

  • http://Cargocentral.com.au Car Salesman

    Richo,

    I think it’s sad you need to defend your precious Sportswagon.No-one here said it was bad just that it doesnt compare to this car.

    The BF3 is cheaper, roomier and more ecconomic to run.These are the priorities for the Wagon range,if anything the proffesionals have stated the VE Wagon has placed itself out of a market for not sticking to this basic criteria.

    The bottom line is as earlier stated families buying wagons will buy an ex-fleet car and wont buy a new one so it makes sense to keep the focus on the people who are going to buy them

  • Richo

    Yeah point taken buy car salesman do you really think that most family buyers will rush to ex-fleet auctions to buy their station wagons? I really doubt this, why on earth would you want a flogged out fleet car? Most family buyers will buy a new car, be it whatever make or model, it really is only fleet buyers who will buy the falcon wagon, or in the second hand market, only families hunting a bargain would buy the ex-fleet cars because most people know that the car will have been flogged senseless and therefore they are cheap for a reason!

  • Richo

    Any my point was that people on this website always find a way to show how the ford is better then the holden, even when clearly in this case its not. It is only better for fleet buyers, of which how many of those are actually on these forums? Not many, most people on here are private buyers in which case yes the holden sportswagon IS a better car, end of story.

    Also, it should be pointed out that holden sold the VZ wagon for quite a while alongside the VE sedan for the fleet buyers, and no one bought them! Thats fact people! Go check Vfacts and it will show a very small amount of people actually bought the VZ wagon, and my prediction is that the same will happen for the BF wagon now the FG is here. I notice all of you rushing to criticise me skipped over this point!!

    My post was meant to be a humorous observaton as to how quickly the ford fans on this site rush to find any reason possible to declare the ford product a better product even when it clearly isn’t. It’s not my fault you blokes had to go and get all sooky about it!

  • http://Cargocentral.com.au Car Salesman

    Richo,

    I think you’ll find that the reason the VZ wagon didn’t sell next to the VE is because BF2 was a better model than that for fleet purchases.

    I think it’s a good thing to be doing these reviews on fleet cars and i think it;s a gross genralisation to say that all the people on this site are private owners.What about the buisness owners? what about user choosers? what about all the other people that don’t fit into your little box richo.

    I think you took what was a good review on what is a fleet purchased vehicle and thought you could have a little Holden preach .Well wrong page for that there is no holden equivalent maybe you should go leave your comments on the Large car Comparison where if you’ll notice the Ford came out on top.

  • Carl

    Richo…..your kidding yourself if you think there aren’t a lot of families out at the auctions or dealers searching for a LOW kilometer ex company car on LPG just like these ones!!!

    Sure there are still a lot of badge snobs and people trying to keep up with their neighbours that will prefer to buy a Territory or Sportswagon BUT not everyone can afford to feed them and the smart people are out there buying up secondhand LPG cars and saving a fortune!
    having said all that there are still people that are well off enough to own big petrol cars with no problems but you must realise that there is no shame in being poor and even less shame in NOT being a snob when you can’t afford to!!

  • Richo

    alright first things first, Car Salesman (obviously a ford salesman) I think you will find that i said MOST of the people on this page are private buyers, not ALL, i was very careful not to say all! I’m quite sure that there are some business owners on here, infact in my little “box” car salesman i actually run my own business mate! I still own a TL magna wagon that has been a great car for me and my business, even though it’s alot smaller then the falcon station wagon, it still does the job, so i do know a LITTLE bit about what I am talking about. And secondly i wasn’t having a go at caradvice for doing a review on the falcon wagon, i was having a jab at the ford fans on here who try and turn any ford/holden article on here into a positive ford deal even when the product isn’t as good. Thats all i was saying, stop taking my posts out of context!

    And Carl, your kidding yourself if you think the majority of families buy their cars from auctions. Yes there are alot who do, but by a significant margin MORE of them buy either new or used cars from dealerships, not auctions. And dealerships take business owners trying to trade in their fleet cars to the cleaners on trade in’s, as well all know, because they know that wagons sell for less in the used car lot then sedans do! Thats just a fact mate, it just is. And when did i say that there was a shame in being poor? Where did you get that from? Goodness me are you taking all of your frustrations in not being able to buy the car you wanted out on me or something? Hey i couldn’t afford the car i wanted either! As i was saying yes alot of people DO buy their cars from auctions, but they also know that generally they are buying a flogged out sales rep mobile and they are willing to take that risk, me personally i’m not, that doesn’t make me a snob though! All it means is that i don’t want an ex-fleet car, just like alot of other people! All i was saying is that car companies like ford or holden don’t make cars to appeal to people in the auctions, because holden and ford don’t make any money out of auction sales! They only care about new vehicle sales and there are more people who will buy a sportswagon then they will a BFIII wagon, thats just the way it is.

    Now stop taking all my posts out of context and realise that all i was saying is that its funny how ford fans imediately zero in on “hey this car is so much better for fleet buyers and used car buyers then the sportswagon is blah blah blah” They’re the ones who turned this into a ford vs holden deal, not me!

  • BOSSCR

    Richo,

    I think the reason Holden sold bugger-all VZ wagons in the last 2 years was because people were waiting for the VE Sportswagon, which i think looks the goods for a family wagon. Also because the majority of fleets bought the falcon gassers. Much rather see them on the roads than CX7/CX9/Kluger etc… Im a rep, i do 60,000-70,000kms/year and would prefer comfort, a good stereo and as many bells and or whistles you can throw at me.

    The Territory is targeted at the private buyer and Ford WILL drop the Falcon wagon once they sought out an Egas Territory. Hopefully they do this soon. Rumor has it they might have to wait until the V6…..

  • Golfschwein

    I read somewhere recently that Holden was still flogging eight or nine hundred VZ wagons a month despite itself.

  • Dave

    Richo.

    lets straighten a few things out.
    I am a salesperson at a ford dealership, and thus i can shed some light on a few things.

    1. Since the release of FG falcon and BFIII wagon, sales of wagons have actually increased slightly, allbeit all the fleets/business owners, but this is what the car is designed for.

    2. You can thank lease companies and big fleet buyers for poor resale and trade in values, not the manufacturer. Why would a dealership give you thousands more for your car than they can get an identical car with full service history from the auctions. You think your trade in price is poor, try ringing a few mitusbishi dealerships yourself and finding out what they will give you for your car. (A car which is no longer produced anywhere in the world)

    3. Wagons ALWAYS fetch slightly more than a sedan in a used car lot, but again, when comparing the applicable sedan/wagon remember there are alot of ex fleet sedans around which don’t help things either.

    4. In an effort to help resale, ford have acually increased the national fleet pricing for all falcon models considerably, the theory being that if the fleet companies pay more for the cars, they will want more for them at changeover time and thus the value wont drop so far.

    5. And as for the critisism of people turning a ford vs holden article into a totally pro ford schmozzle, where is the holden in this article, it is a single vehicle review for a vehicle that is built for a purpose which the great GMH themselves have conceeded IS NOT what the new sportswagon is built for.

  • No Name

    Dave
    Point 2. If Ford didn’t give the fleets huge discounts in the first place than the poor residual thing would not be so prevelent. It given Ford a badge of cheap rep shite that the discerning private buyer doesn’t want. Can’t help feeling that Ford have made a rod for their own back.
    Its proven many times that aiming at the lesser quantity and more up-market ranges makes more profit. A la Ford.

  • No Name

    Sorry “A La BMW” a profitable company.

  • Carl

    Ok Richo……try not to get too upset mate, it seems i and others misinterpreted your comments so i apologise if you got offended…..as for me being frustrated i can admit that i have been frustrated with cars i have owned in the past and most certainly will again in the future BUT currently i am probably happier with my current vehicle than James Packer is with his Bentley because it’s all relative to where you come from and how hard life has been on you! So while my life might seem horrible to some like James Packer, for me owning my car out right having no debts and providing for my family makes me {in my eyes} a very lucky man and very happy!!!!

  • Bret

    Matt Brogan,
    How about some technical details about the engine update?

    Clearly the BF11 engine is not just carried over, because power figures are different.

    The assumption could be nmade that this is a downrated FG engine, as I cant see Ford Building 4 variants of the IL6 (FG, FG turbo, E-gas and BF111). My guess is its the FG engine with BF induction limitations, and/or engine management mapping.

    Anyone know???

  • Andrew M

    carl,
    you seem like one hell of a down to earth bloke.

    you make a very good point.

    some people forget that not everyone can afford or justify a new vehicle.
    if a family is looking at the wagon segment, it usually means they have 2 or 3 kids.
    once you factor grocery and utility bills, coupled with possibly a mortgage, sometimes the latest and greatest vehicle doesnt seem to be the centre of focus.

    i grew up as one of four and my parents have never purchased a new vehicle (and prob never will)

    why would a private buyer purchase a new vehicle when you can pick up one with 10,000k’s on it and save 5K.

    honestly, i would never recommend a brand spanker to someone who was focused on getting a good deal.

    fair enough if you like your cars and are well off, but if you need a family vehicle, then obviously there are other priorities.
    its not exactlly like someone would go out and buy a “fleet” wagon because it is the latest installment.

    people that would buy the falcon wagon place practicality over posing, so i doubt purchasing 2nd hand would phase them

  • Duck

    Could ford update the rear lights or someting to make it more fresh?

  • Bavarian Missile

    Only thinking of you today Andrew and your new uterus…….if you were buying a new one or getting a road testa version!Great if you can get all you want but that doesn’t happen all the time,that being said I have to agree I would ALWAYS PREFER a second hand low ks current model than a brand new model.Ive lost soooooooooo much money on cars over the last 20 or so years,especially when you get into the new Euro stuff new BMWs Porsche’s and Mercs ect,If its coming off your tax bill pffttttt doesn’t matter too much but for the struggling family I have to agree,a good low k current second hand still come with a warranty’s ect and you can normally find close too what you want!

    Do have too say that the tail lights as Duck points out are real dated ,and that being said I would prefer a good second hand VE Sportwagon in looks in 6 months time thanks if thats all you could afford!

  • http://. Naughtyius Maxiumus

    Duck Says:
    August 1st, 2008 at 7:51 pm
    Could ford update the rear lights or someting to make it more fresh?

    NM RESPONSE…..update whole car is long overdue and put a diesel in it!

  • Duck

    Well ford need to something if its going to be here in another 2 years time! I hope it doesn’t look the same, for ford’s sake!

  • Duck

    Ford there is only a certain of peroid of time you can keep a car good looking and not become dated!

  • Carl

    Andrew M…..Thanx mate, I’ve had my fair share of bad luck in life so it’s good to see reviews like these that are for the families on a budget!

    I mean i like watching shows like top gear review super or exotic cars as much as the next guy but unless you are mega rich you don’t get much more than entertainment out of it BUT reviews of basic family transport like this one actually helps young or struggling families make informed decisions.

  • Andrew M

    Duck,
    dont forget holden didnt update their wagon for 2 years after VE release….

    short memory hey?

    the wagon isnt the be all and end all of fords range.’
    how do you sum up that a nil update means ford is dead?

    the funny thing is, right now they would be making a hell of a lot more dollars on each wagon they sell as opposed to holden

  • BOSSCR

    Carl, Andrew M,

    In regards to purchasing a second hand car. A colleague just bought an ’07 BFII XR6 4spd Auto with 20,000kms for $24,888 drive away. I think that is an awesome deal and agree that a new car is not the “be all and end all”.

  • Bret

    Fuel consumption is actually quite impressive for this “old” design: 10. l/100km.
    Lets consider the main competitors:
    Commodore SportlessWagon: 11.1
    Aurion Wagon….oops None
    Camry Wagon…..None again
    OK…Kluger: 11.0

    Whilst the BFIII may seem to be outdated, particularly styling wise, it is still more than competant funtionally and technically at least as good as an Omega “Sport”wagon.

  • Duck

    “Duck,
    dont forget holden didnt update their wagon for 2 years after VE release….

    short memory hey?

    the wagon isnt the be all and end all of fords range.’
    how do you sum up that a nil update means ford is dead?

    the funny thing is, right now they would be making a hell of a lot more dollars on each wagon they sell as opposed to holden”

    Andrew M, Holden had a upcoming wagon to bring out and the public knew that so that’s why there was no point upgrading it. But Andrew the Ford Falcon Wagon is completely different again. Ford have no plans of a wagon for the next couple of years (probably about 2). The same with public don’t know so the private sales will do worse with the ford wagon over time and the private sales may go to the the Sportwagon, but fleets will probably stay with the Falcon.

  • Andrew M

    duck,
    the falcon wagon didnt get that many private sales anyway.

    even if the entire private market went from the falcon wagon to the sports wagon, it wouldnt be much of a turn.

    i think its like 5% of wagon sales are private………

    thats just a drop in the ocean compared to fleet sales.

    fords private wagon sales land on the territory.
    what makes you think that the sports wagon is the only other wagon???

    and just a slight correction,
    when the VE was released, it still remained a mystery whether or not the wagon would get an update.
    the wagon comfirmation for holden didnt come for a while after the VE release

    P.S,
    what you said makes bugger all sense.
    do you really think the public would wait 2 years if ford said hey we are getting there…..??

  • Duck

    ^ford are getting there? Ford have no plans at the moment

  • Andrew M

    duck,
    im not saying whether or not ford will do a sports wagon,
    im just saying when the VE was released, there was doubt of an upgraded wagon.

    for all you know, in 2yrs there may be a ford sports wagon.
    you have no knowledge to suggest other wise

  • Duck

    ^Who says ford will follow down the same path with a Sportwagon like Holden done. They may go down the same route for the old conventional wagon. Continueing with the large luggage capacity of the older wagons like BF, BA and definetly like the Vy, VZ. But just a newer fresher design like with the rest of the FG Falcon range.

  • Duck

    ^Aiming it at fleets again?

  • Interceptor

    Its still a nice car, worth buying a second hand one. They should bring out a crossover 4×4 version or make a RTV wagon version of this model. An RTV Wagon crossover would be over 400kg lighter than the Territory, and 200kg lighter than the Adventura while keeping the good qualities of the normal falcon wagon. Ford should at least bring out a Limited edition RTV wagon into the Australian markets. Oh and diesal would be killer……

  • yodawg

    Don’t understand why the god dam ugly buttocks of this car has survived so long

  • Interceptor

    The “god dam ugly” car that this apparently is has been one of the most popular vehicle in Oz. It has survived because there is no other car like it, the interior space is mainly the point. Thats why its mainly used as a fleet car, although it makes a brilliant family car. I know this because i grew up in the damn thing! It keeps going and going, no major trouble with anything[1998 and 2001 model].
    When brought into service, it was discovered that 2 cylinders were not working. The performance hasn’t been affected whatsoever. Not to mention off road driving, has an anoyyingly slippery diff…it came out as it came in, plus some dust. As i said above, there is no other car like it. The looks of this car is probobly the last as the fg falcon wagon will arrive sometime in the coming years.
    Cheers
    -I

  • LiquidJaguar

    Fellas, been driving BA station wagon for work ,coming from AWD and all sorts of other cars. This WAGON is very very very poorly built. Handling is gonna get someone killed. It slips, swerves, veers, you name it. Spacious inside, but for what? a car you can’t even drive normally. Bloody thing vibrates like nuts. You go down the mountain to ‘gong’ with the brakes on and it’s as if the car is gonna take off.
    Result: Absolutely “Reliable” piece of junk that is not worth it’s price.

  • Greg Bennett

    I cant see any of the euro cars or dunnydoors (commodores) getting more than 700,000KM and still going. My BA1 just wont stop. Sure its ugly but it works so hard. Please keep the old leaf springs and rear wheel drive. The old donk is cheaper to run the a hyundai half car (gas powered) I simly cannot se a more practical car around anywhere. Pretty comfy and love the high beam. Horrible powere window switches though.
    A car search on ebat or carpoint only gives you old deisels or falcons when you find cars over 600,000km. Beat that Korea

  • Luke Evans

    I drive this exact same model at work. I agree with LiquidJaguar, the handling is absolutely pitiful. I would be very worried putting an inexperienced driver behind the wheel in wet conditions.

    In my opinion, the car is/has:

    -underbraked
    -a nearly useless Traction Control System
    -so much body roll and rear overhang that it is extremely prone to oversteer
    -no side airbags. How long has the Commodore had them now, Ford?

    I could go on for ever. If you ever do drive one of these vehicles, be very careful, especially of the TCS

  • Jonathan

    I can not believe there are so many positive comments about this car. Aside from the shocking look, outdated cabin, the worst seats (good for giving you a sore back on a long drive), the car drives worse than any other car I have driven in the past 10 years! The suspension and handling are pathetic to say the least, and if you do not have the MkIII with stability control watch out! The body roll is huge, the airbags are lacking in number, and everything acts on delay.

  • Steven

    Yeah I have just had my company car Nissan Patrol replaced with a LPG Falcon wagon, and I love it. Drives really well and handles great for its size (even handles better than my 2004 Honda Accord V6), it also has a heck of lot more room than the Nissan. No comparison in comfort, I can drive the Falcon from Adelaide to Sydney and get out and feel fresh, whereas with the Nissan I almost had to go to a chiropractor after every trip. Very happy with the new family truckster.

  • sammy

    BA and BF engines are 100% the same as far as the Barra182 and 190 goes. They are both 100% identical, they both make 141.2rwkw despite lies about BF having a higher compression ratio and an independent Dual VCT, which is actually the same thing as on the very 1st BA. They both make 188-189.5kW depending on the weather conditions.

    The Ba 182Kw inherited its specifications due to an old and inferior pre Euro 3 emissions dyno, which gave a car a wrong power reading, in fact the very 1st BA XT 4.0L DOHC VCT makes 190kW/383Nm from 2500 to approx 3300-3400rpm, therefore they said that it makes 380Nm at 3250rpm and BF to be making 383Nm at 2500rpm.

    Where in fact they are both 100% identical and their compression ratio varies depending on temperature. Therefore, BA or the BF they are both the same, both making 189kW and around 385Nm of torque on a good day on RON91.

    Run them on RON95 or 98 and you get just a tat over 400Nm and close to 195kW of power and its no joke its the FACT.

  • sammy

    on a cold day with engine warmed up for 5 to 10 min on premium 4.0L Barra engine can touch 200kW and over 420Nm of torque, till it quickly fades away 15-20 in to the driving and settles down to the 185kW/385Nm mark and varies depending on humidity levels, air pressure and other variables.

    If you do a full and proper dyno calibration tune up the most power that can be extracted from a mechanically stock BA 4.0Litre engine with stock exhaust and factory cat and extractors and intake main fold and air filter is 208kW and 425Nm of torque.

    The RPM peaks where this power occurs will be changed and most claim that it would be making 208kW at 4400rpm and 425Nm of torque at just over 2000rpm.

    Basically taking off the top end and making the bottom end unparalleled.

    So if you want a ute, get a 4.0L and tune it to the max which will yield the best performance but at much lower RPM range. Good for towing.

    ps: i own a BF S1 Fairmont 5.4L 6 speed ZF and with a full tune it now makes 590Nm and 258kW all from a 100% stock hardware, the sad part is that VCT is fully disabled under this tune, but still 590Nm at 2400rpm is not a bad thing and close to 260kW at 4600rpm is a killer.

    Sam.

  • Kevin Of the Hills

    Just purchased a demo, 2008, MK3 Wagon, dedicated LPG, and could not be happier. Drives well, quiet, well appointed, comfortable. After having an EB2 1993 fairmont, from new, this is quite a considerable upgrade. Ford have put a lot of thought, and development into this car over the years, and produced, a quality, yet market segment orientated vehicle. I now hope ford service can keep the car running as it is today.

  • Rudd

    True, totally!
    I own a petrol version of a BF MkII though and i got it supercharged to 392 flywheel kilowatts.

    The car hammers now, it makes 790Nm of torque and a custom re-built transplanted 6 speed ZF on a 3.91 diff does wonders, 0-100 in less than 4.5s.

    i am gona get that car in a magazine , i want to show it off.

  • ron

    some would say my BF this and that, my FG this and that. Some would say “i have a dual independent VCT” this and that, but in fact both BA and BF have identical engines. While the BF only has a different EDIT that makes its DOHC work independently when on idle or when you turn the car on for the 1st time, once you revve it above 1000rpm they both synchronize just like on that 1st BA Barra182 motor.Both cars in fact make 190kW, whether its BA182 or BF190 , it is the same, if you run a Barra182 on RON95 you get 190kW at slightly higher 5250rpm versus 5000rpm, and you get just a little more torque 3Nm extra and yet at lower RPM.
    And why lower RPM? , that is because higher octane fuels burn faster, therefore more power and torque will occur at lower RPM, while it wont be felt as much at the certain point in the mid–range, most is felt at low RPM and above 5000rpm.
    So basically a BF is just a software revised BA, both making same power/torque, while the BF is tested a lot more on premium fuels, hence the reason why it appears to make 8kW more. But there is more to this story, some claim that Ford used old testing equipment, so 182kW was just an estimate, some claim that car makes 180kW and 390Nm and not 182 and 380Nm.So there will always be room for error, the EUROIII emission standards that BF is under have measured that Barra182 to make 190kW/383Nm, so if you’re driving a BA it basically is a BF, but the only difference is that each cam is asynchronous at idle which saves fuel, instead of sitting at 1.7l per 100k on idle, on the BF its 1.4-1.5L which saves fuel thanks to the ECU software EDIT.
    Otherwise an engine is 100% identical and no special or different cam phasers are employed or different cam profiles.
    Unless we compare it to an FG which is slightly different yet approx 95% identical to the fist Barra182.
    So run your Barra182 on RON98 and you’ll see the figures that were never advertised, a figure of something like 194kW at 5000rpm and 402Nm of torque between 2500-3500rpm. Run it on RON91 regular unleaded and on a good day we are talking about 185kW/395Nm until the engine warms up and goes back to calibrated and tested 182/380 figures on RON91 on a reasonable humidity level in the air.
    Its all the same, whether you sit in a BA XT or BF XT or FG XT, whether a 4 speed auto , 5 or a 6 speed ZF.
    Unless we’re comparing EB Falcon and AUIII, there would be a significant difference, but when comparing say BA Fairmont 4.0L versus BF Fairmont 4.0L there will be zero difference, and if you were to compare a G6 4.0 195kW/391Nm on RON91 with BA/BF 4.0, there wont be even 1% difference on road performance, unless the FG made 220kW/440Nm so that the difference can be felt and seen as substantial or significant at least in theory.
    Correct me if i am wrong. Even when testing a new FG on RON98 where it peaks at 205kW/420Nm , i see only a small, very small incremental improvement versus the BA/BF XT on the same fuel, whether in 4 speed or 6 speed guise.

  • Aaron

    I currently drive a 2009 Ford FG Falcon G6E and right now im in the market for a new family wagon for my wife to drive the kids and all their junk around in.

    IM LOOKING NO FURTHER than A 2010 Ford Falcon Wagon MkIII!!!!!

    Its soooo understated and meets all our essential requirements, however if a higher spec model was availible we would have taken it.

    So gues where Im going next week? The local Ford dealer of course.

  • Becca

    I didn’t read all the posts, seemed to me like a whole lot of comments from people who don’t believe there are others with different opinions. All the chatter about private families not buying this or not buying that or wanting something else, how many of these people have families, how many families do they know?
    I raised 4 kids, for the most part of it, travelling around in Falcon wagons. Raising a family, you have to be budget conscious and you consider things like cargo space, rear leg room, passenger safety, ongoing repair costs and the like; I’ve always owned Falcon wagons because they tick all the boxes. A family holiday, towing a caravan and piled high in the back with luggage, the dog on the floor at the feet of the kids and a bench seat in front to accomodate the 4th child, was always a cinch. With so many Falcons around, there was never a problem getting affordable spares, so ongoing mantenance was always cheap. The fact that a well maintained taxi can do a million km without too much trouble was always a good point for me to not mind buying an ex-fleet car with 300K or so on it. Budget conscious families who can’t afford or justify spending $30K to $50K on a family car, but need the room, will buy ex-fleet or ex-cab because they’re cheap and generally have a very good service history. I’ve owned a lot of other vehicles as second cars, European, Jap, American, even Korean, with people movers the front seats are up over the front axle and engine, with your legs in the crumple zone; the rear seats are back behind the rear axle, with your head in the crumple zone, not exactly what I consider safe for my family. 4WD’s and the like have more things to go wrong and cost more money to fix, plus they’re not safe for pedestrians if the worst was to happen. Other wagons are too busy looking pretty and having fancy features, with little thought for the 3 teenage kids that might be cramped into the back with no leg room and nowhere to put the dog and very little luggage space. I only have 1 teen at home now, but I still have a Falcon Wagon (BAII bought new, now that I have less kids and more money). The next new car I would buy would be another Falcon Wagon, if they’re still making them when I decide to update. If not, then I’ll make some mods to my BA and keep it for the long term, she’s still got another 800K in her if I look after her. While I have and will always own other cars; right now a Peugeot 19, a Nissan Urvan and a Fairmont sedan (yeah I just love cars); The Falcon wagon will always be my favourite.

  • Dave Collins

    I just bought a 2007 BF MKII Futura wagon with dedicated gas (ex fleet vehicle). I paid $16500 for it.
    Apart from the spare in the back (because of the gas tank) which is a bit of a pain, I think it is a pretty good wagon (especially since mine has only done 56000 kms).
    The car will do about 600k’s off a full tank and it has all the modern accessories you would expect (except side airbags – which quite frankly are overrated in my opinion anyway – if something hits me hard enough in the side I’m going to be screwed regardless of a couple of pollows). It doesn’t have the power of its petrol cousin but it still has plenty of torque under the hood and will easily tow a full load up a steep hill… the semiauto shifter helps too.
    People will undoubtably bag it out but I think it is a great family wagon with plenty of space and comfort for a very reasonable price.
    You get what you pay for.

  • Skeeter

    I really like how the wagon looks. If I had the money I’d buy one, and first thing I’d do is drop a v8 in and xr8 front end.

  • John

    I’ve just waded thru 2 years worth of reviews for this vehicle and have quietly decided that buying one is still the best bet for my family.
    We are on a tight budget so buying a used fleet vehicle from a dealership is the way I’ll go.
    I used to be a used car salesman and humbly consider the falcons to be a superior vehicle to the commodores in many ways and the BF3 wagon, although aimed at fleet buyers is going to be the best possible option for our needs and budget.
    Sure I’d love a Territory which is aimed squarely at the type of buyer I am but there’s no way I’ll get one of a similar age and mileage for the money I’ll get a falcon wagon for.

  • Email Hunt

    If only they made an FG shape wagon, with its nice new shape it’d be good looking again  ..and… it’d be the only full sized wagon on the market.
    If they made an high riding RTV version too they’d cream the market (why buy a 2WD that looks like a 4WD when you can get a big high riding 2WD that looks good, with a diff look that makes it surprisingly capable off road vehicle (better than many ‘soft roaders’)..

  • Dlone

    Bought a July 2009 MK111 ex gov fleet wagon at the auction last month up here in the NT with 40,000km for $13,000.
    Didn’t trade my old 200,000 km 1998 EL wagon which I bought in 2000 for $16,500, as it still goes well and would not be worth selling it. I’ll keep it for the boys.
    The new one goes great and I’d recommend one to anyone, especially at the prices they are s/hand.

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