• Composed ride; comfortable cabin; smooth engine
  • Interior plastics; lacks XR excitement

7 / 10

Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
by Nadine Armstrong

Model Tested:

  • Ford Falcon XR6; 4.0-litre, six cylinder, petrol; six-speed automatic; four-door sedan: $42,490*

CarAdvice Rating:

Words by Nadine Armstrong | Photos by Nadine Armstrong & Ford Australia

The Ford Falcon XR6 presents a happy compromise between base model blandness and a testosterone-enhancing turbo. This large sedan with sporty aspirations may even soften the family feud over which new car to buy.

Within the large car segment (under $70,000) it’s surprisingly slim pickings, dominated by Ford and Holden. There are noteworthy appearances from the Honda Accord and Toyota Aurion – and then there are the often overlooked offerings from Hyundai, Mitsubishi and Skoda. Really, it’s a seriously mixed bag.

A step up from the base model Falcon, the XR range offers something a little bit special with better looks and increased performance. And let’s not forget, greater street credibility.

Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test

The Falcon XR6 is the cheapest and most simple package in the XR range, which sees beefier offerings in the form of the XR6 Turbo and XR8.

The 4.0-litre, six-cylinder engine of the Ford XR6 reaches peak power of 195kW at 6000rpm and torque tops out at 391Nm at 3250rpm. (The XR6 Turbo leaps up to 270kW at 5250rpm and 533Nm at 2000-4750rpm.)

This translates into a fast and powerful ride when you’re playing within this rpm range. At high revs, you’ll also enjoy a beautiful raspy engine note. There’s enough grunt to throw you back in your seat upon take-off, and yet not so much that you get unnecessarily out of shape. Weighting in at around 1704kg, the Ford XR6 strikes a very good balance between power and weight.

Compare the XR6 with, say, the 3.6-litre Holden Commodore SV6 and you’re down some 15kW, but up on torque by 41Nm.

Ford Falcon XR6 comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission, but our test vehicle was fitted with the optional six-speed automatic transmission with sequential sport shift which increases the price by $3,000. A 4.0-litre E-Gas engine with four-speed automatic transmission with sequential sports shift can also be optioned.

Behind the wheel, the Ford XR6 delivers a composed ride that sits glued to the road and flat through corners thanks to nice sports suspension. The ride is reasonably firm while still offering a nice level of cushioning from harsh road surfaces.

Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test

The sports leather-wrapped steering wheel feels nice in hand, but the steering itself doesn’t provide the level of feedback you might expect. It lacks emotion and involvement. On the other hand, the light and very direct steering of the XR6 makes manouvering this car a breeze. But I can’t help but think it dampens what could be a truly invigorating drive, given a little more feeling through the steering wheel.

Whether in automatic or manual mode, the gear changes are fast and smooth. Switching to performance mode in the XR6 simply gives the driver more control over this. It’s ideal for highway overtaking or if you’re simply after a moment of more involved driving.

In either mode, the XR6 doesn’t’ quite deliver the thrill that I’m expecting. If you’re chasing sporty prowess, the XR6 Turbo may be a better catch. The Ford XR6 does however deliver a very confident and composed drive.

Looks are subjective, but I find the look and shape of the Ford XR6 very appealing. It’s less muscular than some if its rivals. In a good way. Exterior proportions and slender body lines create a clean, balanced shape. Exterior styling cues of the Ford XR6 include 17-inch alloy wheels, fog lights and a rear spoiler. Compare the looks of the Ford XR6 and the Holden Commodore, and the Commodore looks a tad lardy – or is that muscle?

Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test

Slip inside the Ford XR6 and you may be surprised. It’s a far more delicate and understated interior design than this car’s reputation would lead you to believe. With that in mind, maybe my surprise will translate as a disappointment for others. Or is this another sign of a happy compromise? The interior is indicative of designers sitting firmly on the fence.

The instrumentation cluster is clear and a multi-function display in the centre includes distance to empty, average speed, average fuel consumption and speed warning.

The extensive use of plastic in the cabin is a disappointment and tempers the spirited tone of the XR6. It significantly lowers the quality of the cabin and feels cheap in hand – particularly the gear selector and hand brake. Likewise, the interior door levers are plastic and flimsy in hand. An upgrade of the interior trim would be a huge leap forward. Splashes of leather and chrome would better aligned to this cars personality and build a greater divide between it and the base model. Option the XR Luxury Pack and you’re half way there, with leather inserts.

Seat trim in our test vehicle was ‘Streetwise Graphite’ fabric – which has a large mesh-look finish that also extends to the door trim. Opinions on this trim were divided among my passengers. It grew on me.

Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test

Questionable seat trim aside, the sports seats in the XR6 are very comfortable and provide good support. The driver gets electric height adjust, but forward and back and recline adjustments are manual. They also come with XR6 embroidery to match the floor mats. The cabin ergonomics in general are good.

Second row seats have the same cloth trim and are equally comfortable. All three passengers have three-point seat belts, but the centre passenger goes without a headrest. There’s a fold down armrest with two drink holders, two directional air vents, seat back pockets, but no in door storage pockets. The seat base is quite high, so legroom is very good; taller passengers will be comfortably seated. Unless you’re the unlucky passenger stuck in the middle seat, tackling the large shaft hump at your feet.

Visibility is very good, and the reversing camera and audible warning signals optioned on our test car made parking simple. The rear spoiler – possibly this cars boldest styling feature – also acts as a good guide of the cars boundaries.

On a freeway route, the XR6 was onboard computer showed a fuel consumption reading of 9.9 litres per 100km and for shorter suburban trips it came in around 12 litres per 100km. My calculations at refuel come in at around 14 litres per 100km based on kilometers travelled for a city based test cycle.

Space and storage in the XR6 is very good. There are lots of storage places and the boot is huge – 535 litres. The Ford XR6 has a 60/40 split fold feature, however the opening is fairly small and will limit the size of goods you can load through.

The audio and communications spec in the XR6 is good, including MPS and auxiliary input. Our vehicle was fitted with the optional Technology Pack which includes Bluetooth and iPod integration. Ford’s Bluetooth is very easy to use and connection/re-connection is seamless. The iPod connection lives in your centre console, out of sight. iPod details are displayed on the centre screen and you can flip through tracks via the multi-function wheel.

The Ford Falcon scores a five-star rating from ANCAP. Safety features include: stability control with emergency brake assist and traction control, anti-lock brakes, electronic brake force distribution and front and side airbags – curtain airbags are an option.

The Ford XR6 is a little bit special, but the quality of some of the finishes sees it fall short of something great. Then again, greatness comes at a price – and it’s well above $43,490. Maybe the XR badge raised my expectations too high, because the Ford XR6 is great value and a very good drive, but nonetheless I’m left a little empty, wanting for a turbo.


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

  Submit an Owner Car Review


Ford Falcon XR6 Review & Road Test
  • 7
  • 7
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  Submit an Owner Car Review

  • Jazrod

    Are you sure you didn’t test the 4speed auto? It certainly has the 4speed auto gear selector! That’s a guarantee!
    6speed ZF selector has an additional (not sure if it’s leather or vinyl) piece at the top of the leaver…

    • Rhys

      It is definatly the 6 speed Auto. Ford don’t use the 4 speed on anything but the eGas which this is not.

      • Andrew

        The photos in the main article show the car to be a 5 speed auto. You’re both right – the ZF 6 speed option brings the vinyl/leather strip on top of the gear knob, and Ford only use the DSI 4 speed transmission with the e-Gas model.

        • jp

          hmmm has the rest of the competitors caught up to the brilliance of the zf…. normally they rate a special mention in reviews as being a good bit of kit

          • safety first

            The opposition has gotten closer but the ZF is still miles ahead in real life

          • Shane

            The ZF is still ahead of other offerings especially Holden. The GM 6 speed auto is very poor in comparison.

      • Mitchell Oke

        Yep that’s the 5 speed shifter in that car, the 6 speed ZF gets a leather insert on the handle like it did in the previous generation BF. The 5 speed isn’t quite as good as the ZF, but it’s considerably better than the 4 speed it replaced.

        The $36990 “special” Ford have on includes the 5 speed auto, gotta love a special price that doesn’t seem to end 😛

    • Jazrod

      OOps, forgot about the French 5speed!

  • Ben

    For same amount of money I would have a bf f6 there in the mid 30s + twice the performnce and looks

    • Andrew

      I looked at one, and insurance was like $6000pa! I currently own a turbo car of the same age and it is less than 1/3 of the price to insure an F6

      • AB

        I priced insurance for a XR6 and G6E Turbo yesterday through RACV Insurance.
        XR6 with alarm: $790
        G6E Turbo with alarm: $920

        A G6E Turbo at work currently insured at cost of $840

        Not sure on the F6

        • Andrew

          I think $6000pa is more than the average middle-aged male would pay – I am under 25, male, and have had accident history in the last three years (wasn’t my fault). However, my Mazda6 MPS still costs less than 1/3 of the price to insure, so really it will still be an expensive car to insure when comparing to something like the MPS.

          • AB

            I just got an online estimate through RACV quote: QTE969866441
            I am 29, car for private use, owned by myself, with alarm;

            Cost was $1,685.16

            I reckon you got ripped on your quote!

          • Andrew

            I don’t doubt you could get it cheaper, but as I said, Male/25/accident history. It’s quite expensive! That’s why I was surprised by the price for the MPS, because I was looking at FG XR6s and this wasn’t much dearer.

          • Andrew M

            Ive got the XR6 in the ute, and it costs me $980
            Ive got the alarm etc too
            My SP23 costs $570
            If you reckon you the XR6 costs you 1,685.16, you were still getting ripped. Both of mine cost less than that

          • AB

            Andrew M,

            If you read my original comment I was quoted $790 for the XR6 with alarm.
            The quote for $1,685.16 was for the 07 FPV F6 as mentioned by Andrew

      • Stig’s Australian Uncle

        Is it a turbo diesel Van?


    Here we go. Ford fans will love it Holden fans tell you it is rubbish. This car is good in Australia and USA. Wont sell in Europe, Asia at all because of it’s size of engine.

    • PJK

      i didn’t think ford ever had any aspirations to sell it in europe of asia, so what does it matter?

  • revolvor

    For a few grand more you can get the Nissan Maxima ti, 3.5litre, all the gear. I’m surprised you left it off the introduction. It topped a review of 6 cylinder models on this website a couple of months ago. sure its front wheel drive but in the mid $40K’s, you have to compromoise somewhere.

    • toxic_horse

      The maxima is for golf playing retired men.

      • Tony

        the maxima isn’t a real alternative

        you may as well get the turbo… you gain resale if nothing else… and an LSD…

    • Andrew

      It is funny they left it off, but mentioned Mitsubishi as having a competing vehicle, which is incorrect – the 380 has been out of production since March ’08

    • Kampfer

      People who looking into XR6 won’t even think about buying Maxima.

      Still have to pay for side airbags on XR6 is pretty poor…. This car does not have 5 start ANCAP Rating as standard.

      • AB

        Yes it does, it was tested without the curtain AirBags for its ANCAP Assessment and received 5 Stars

      • AB

        From the ANCAP website:

        The vehicle scored 16 out of 16 in the side impact crash test and a further two points in the optional pole test. This is the first Australian-built vehicle to receive a 5 star rating from ANCAP.

        • XR6

          1. The Falcon in the side pole test was fitted only with side airbags not curtains yet achieved 5 stars.
          2. The side air bags are STANDARD equipment.
          3. The side air bags are HEAD and THORAX protecting, providing full protection for the driver and passenger. Curtains are an option which provide head protection for rear passengers.

    • David

      That review had its share of mistakes. I recall seeing the Honda Accord awarded more points for handling than both the Commodore and Falcon. Um, I don’t think so.

      • Tomas79

        Why was that a mistake?? Just because your personal bias doesn’t believe it doesn’t make it a mistake!!

    • Captain Nemo

      @ revolver

      If you buy a Maxima over this you need to hand in your man card!

    • Jack

      I wouldn’t be prepared to compromise in that (FWD) way.

    • t

      the maxima has gone from a nice looking car ( the last model ) to a gumby looking thing.

      falcon looks MUCH better and is still rwd.

      im sure the max is a nice car, but it looks too renault now!

  • Baddass

    Be a great company car, but you’d always feel like you’ve got second best to the Turbo. It is a great looking machine.

    • Minnow

      Agreed, i would prefer a G6 though they just look more classy yet sporty and theyre the same price. Saw a black G6 today optioned up with those 19’s and it looked fantastic!

  • AB

    Very surprised about your comments regarding interior plastics. Having been in all the FG’s, the interior is easily line ball with the best in class for presentation and quality. I do however agree the seat material isn’t the best choice.

    I found this review quite negative and not very represtative of just how good this car is for a family sports sedan. A car easily better than 3.5 stars you gave it.

    Our FG with the same engine/trans combo has returned 9.9l/100km for the last 14,000km of city/suburban driving

    • Tony

      especially since these guys given 4-5 stars to some real ordinary cars… ah Ford… the perpetual whipping boy

    • AB

      For performance of intended function I would have given the XR6 an overall rating of 4.5 stars!
      In this price category, what car is there that provides a better sporting FAMILY sedan?

    • Camski

      I personally hate the plastics, not so much the visual effect, but the choice of material and build.

      That said though, I love the ride (it really is built for Australian roads) and minimal body roll given the level of comfort is simply amazing. Handles like a smaller car, normal driving the car doesn’t show it’s weight or bulk.

      Ford are on the money with this one as an Australian car, it’s perfect for our roads and Aussie conditions.

  • Jonty

    I know that rec retail is well over $40k, but Ford have had there specials going on the xr6 for a while and my local dealer still has them drive away with tec pack for under $37k. That being said the SV6 has similar price deals at the moment. All good for the aussie family sedan buyers.

  • Reality Check

    They’re on special, 2009 build for $36,995 and for that modest money you get a lot of car. Of course if you really want performance step up to the XR6 Turbo or better still the F6, which offers XFR Jaguar performance for a third of the price.

    Nadine, like I’m sure your mother told you, you get what you pay for. You can’t expect a full sized brand new ballistic rocketship for 40K.

    • AB

      I dont usually comment the journalists work but I thought overall this was a poor quality review

      • Jimmy

        I’d have to disagree – I thought it was fairly succinct and different perspective on a car that has been around for a while now and reviewed a lot. It’s a nice change from the usual verbosity that plagues motoring journalists.

      • noj

        I personally think it was spot on, they actually have the experience of driving other manufactures cars to be able to judge whats poor quality and whats not. Unlike most comments on here by people that wouldn`t contemplate driving anything other than a falcon or Commodore but are quick to comment on something they have never experienced because as you know they can`t possibly be better than the locals. LOL

        • Andrew M

          IMO the reviewer never understanded the vehicle in the first place.

          Of course an Aston martin is a better car than an XR6 Falcon, but show me a better comparitive vehicle…..

          The reviewer jumped into a N/A 6 cyl vehicle expecting mind blowing turbo performance. Heck they didnt even know what gearbox was in the vehicle.

          Once again its not that certain comments may or may not be true, just the relativeness of them

          • noj

            There is many ways to compare a car, like not everyone chooses a car based on its size or performance. Some people happen to choose a car based on quality. I personally prefer a car with good looks and a quality interior, so that rules out a Falcon for me as simply it can`t offer me that. I`m also not looking for a car to Taxi people around. So depending on how you look at a car I can find plenty of better comparitive cars for 40k, if you were comparing class and quality that is.

          • Tomas79

            To Right Jon,
            This site has a series problem with ford fairies infestations…
            Nobody can say anything negative about their beloved falcon, without being criticized….
            Only a brainwashed ford fanatics would claim that the falcon has a nice, quality interior!!!

          • Andrew M

            So are you saying someone looking for a car may start with looking at a falcon, then end up buying a BMW Z4???

            What a crock.
            Sure people buy cars based on quality, but they wont all of the sudden jump from a sub 40K car to 100K to find better quality

            noj, and Tomas,

            Its all relative guys, and thats where you seem to struggle.
            Pitch this vehicle against its true competitors, and thats when it truely stands out.
            Pitch it against an Aston Martin and it gets hosed.

            This is like making a captain obvious statement that school grade football is terrible and NRL is much better. Its all relative

            So come on, name this plentiful amount of large sized cars that offer better value

          • Tomas79

            I’d have a more more practical, better built, better looking (interior and exterior), better handling AWD Skoda Superb for similar money!!

            Also Andrew, don’t forget, value for money is just one factor, and because of tariffs, and import distance a fairly artificial one at that!!

          • Nelson

            The European Built Ford Focus XR5 is better in every way.
            Build quality, performance, reliability, etc…

            Don’t go on the FWD theme because if you know how to drive BWD or FWD the same thing, wait a minute no it’s not, FWD is faster on the curves.

          • Andrew M

            you lost your credability when you mention the skoda was a good looker.

            Also Skoda and VW reliability isnt all its cracked up to be.
            Sure they may put out a good interior, but many owners discuss their diasppointment, and many surveys prove it

          • Tomas79

            Andrew M,
            Skoda is a Good Looker, just read up many of the european reviews, and many surveys do prove it’s reliability!! Skoda always scores well in all reliability surveys, occasionally it’s the only European built vehicle in the top 10!!

          • Andrew M

            Did you check the latest JD powers???

            Ford score well whilst VW down the bottom end.

            Sure they may have a better fitted together interior, but its commonly known that the actual reliability is just perception.

            Plus in addition to that, Fords are cheaper to repair if something does go pear shape with them

            And Skoda a good looker??? yeah good one ha ha ha ha
            Thats in the awkward looking basket along with Ssangyong, AU Falcon, Some Subarus, Last gen Camry etc

          • noj

            Ah well I guess it won`t matter shortly when the Falcon is canned altogether. 2015 Isn`t it? Personally I think it will be lucky to last that long, the Territory has one last update and then that is gone. I dare say its the same for the Falcon and then we will be importing the Taurus.

          • t

            im still laughing my ass off at the idiots saying falcon will be canned.

            its future has been confirmed, morons, read a bit more hey?

            falcon WILL continue, it WILL be sharing a platform with MUSTANG, and the good ol boys in the US will not stand for a fwd stang, sooooo, itll stay rwd.

            i love how so many people grabbed and ran with the FALCONS dead theme ( thanks to the press ) but failed to see the story in the paper TWO DAYS LATER, saying that it was media hype and falcon was safe.

          • Tomas79

            LOL T, you are the moron here as nothing has been confirmed only speculated… And since they didnt bother creating an fg falcon ute, and now they canned the bf2 ute, we can safely assume there are no long term plans for the falcon!!

      • http://www.oztion.com.au/?r=11153 omgwot

        agree 100%

  • Sam

    Going by the number plates, this is one of the original press cars when the car was released back in 2008. This may explain the higher fuel economy and the poor plastics. ie. this would have been one of the 1st fg made.

    • Andrew

      I thought the same, but maybe they have transferred the plates? If it is one of the first cars though, I don’t think it would explain higher fuel consumption, but certainly plastic quality.

      • Andrew

        Actually, I think you’re right, I have just seen on another website a photo of a blue XR6 with these plates.

        • Andrew

          It’s confusing hey, there are two different sets of interior shots! But, the ICC shows a date of 1/3/10 so at least some of the shots are recent. And it certainly has the 5 speed auto shifter.

        • Jaymz

          They have just used the original press photos for the external shots by the looks of it. I saw these exact shots when the FG was released in 2008.

    • Andrew M

      Fuel economy on the I6 motor actually gets better with age.
      Either this has just come out of the box, or Nadine had it locked in 1st for her hwy run.
      I get mid 6’s on a hwy run, and thats out of the ute version which is rated at around a litre more.

      I get high 11-low 12L pulling a trailer weighing around 1 tonne on a genuine mix of driving

      • Andrew M

        oh yeah, and the difference between hwy and city seems suss.

        I reckon the readout was on average economy, not instant economy when the hwy economy was being quoted

        • Splatcat03

          On a highway drive my XR6 Turbo gets down 8.1L/100km. During the week on my daily commute to work my average is 12.4L/100km. Mine is a manual, but I the figures in this article seem a little off.

          • peter

            thanx for this, anyone got real world economy figures for an auto

          • AB

            9.9L/100km for NA 6 with ZF 6 Speed.
            14,000km driven so far, mostly around the suburbs on 60km roads

      • Jack

        Got to drive an FG XR6 5 speed auto for a few hundred km as a hire car. Real World touring was 10.2 for me from memory, but that included some very twisty Tassie scenery. Had a BF XR6 on mostly flat highways in Western SA for 3000km and got an 8.6, which was a 4 speed auto and so quite amazing.

        So how she got a 14 is beyond me. Left it idling over lunch? Carried a Mini on the roof?

        It’s a good package, does anyone offer a wagon conversion for it? If only Ford built an FG XR6 wagon (my pet theme…)

        • G6E TURBO

          I get under 11.5l/100km calculated all the time. Drove to Syd last year and managed 720km on 60L of fuel.

  • John

    “The Falcon XR6 is the cheapest and most simple package in the XR range, which sees beefier offerings in the form of the XR6 Turbo and XR8″

    Ahh what about the XR5T?

    • nick

      What about it? It’s around the same price in Focus form and more in Mondeo form and both are completely different cars to the Falcon.

      • Nelson

        Yes they are different cars! Don\’t get me wrong here I love that Australia makes the Falcon and the Commodore and I hope it goes on for many years to come…
        But the European cars are so much better in every way and form.

        They are different cars they are better in all aspects especially in handling, what Australian car makes don\’t seem to get right, the INTERIOR quality.

        Ford Focus XR5 outperforms the XR6 in every way, especially on the curves.

        • nick

          The Focus’ interior isn’t that great either.

  • Martin

    I want to like it, but the interior is a let down for me. Too many interchanging lines and buldges, it’s just a mess. Nothing really flows. In my opinion.

  • Tom22

    Why do people constantly praise the FG’s interior over that of the VE?

    Yes the computer system is nice, but the rest is a plastic mess, and that steering wheel is super ugly and looks worn despite being brand new.

    • Jack

      Because it’s better.

    • t


      VE’s interior is well dated now. actually, VE looks dated already.

      open the glovebox or put the handbrake on, in a VE…. enough said really.

  • XR6

    I recently purchased an FG XR6. For me, it was between the Aurion and Falcon. The Aurion has a smoother engine and transmission. The Falcon much much much better handling. Overall I think the Falcon offered a better package. I didnt consider the Commodore, as I cant get over its interior. Someone mentioned the steering wheel, I would suggest drive the car, it is in my opinion the most function and best feeling in the class.

  • Bent 8 Brigade

    Drive both FG and VE in various models and specs daily at my work.
    Both are nice large cars and atm exceptional bang for buck.
    I find that the FG cockpit seems more snug to sit in and the FG seems to sit lower than VE.
    VE is a very spacious car, and both FG and VE are nice to sit in.

    I find the beat up about the VE’s dash being outdated to be a crock.
    FG’s dashboard does indeed seem plasticky but so is every other car on the market unless the badge on the back reads ‘Veyron’

  • steer

    “The sports leather-wrapped steering wheel feels nice in hand, but the steering itself doesn’t provide the level of feedback you might expect. It lacks emotion and involvement. ”

    ok, i always read this (or something like this) on car reviews even on top gear, but what is really a “good feedback” that we should expect from steering wheel to make it a good drive? what is the “emotion” or “involvement” that the steering wheel should provide? pls enlighten me on this

    • Shak

      Its not something you can describe. If it feels right you will know.

  • Martin

    Surprise, surprise. Anyone says anything slightly negative even with genuine merit and the hordes of fanboys give -1 votes.

    • handshandy

      No its cause nobody likes a whinger Marty

  • Lynchy

    Yeah I found this review a little inconsistent compared to similar reviews this website has carried out. Tom22 the FG interior across the entire range is superior to the VE, the car is newer so it’s to be expected.

    3.5 stars is probably about right for this car when looking at the entire range but in isolation against it’s direct competitors it probably deserves another half or so, as a complete package I don’t think there’s a car that would better it. I’ve recetly driven (although fairly briefly) a new Aurion, FG XR6 (with the 5 speed) and the VE SV6 (pre SIDI) driving dynamics definately go to the FG with the VE coming in second, the Aurion a distant third, the interior see’s a similar result, the VE may be getting a bit long in the tooth but it offered more comfort than the similar spec Aurion, again the Falcon was the pick, they all have excess hard plastics so I find the reviewers comments in that regard strange, find a car in the bracket that doesn’t. Performance goes to the Falcon, followed by the Aurion then the Commy (the new SIDI SV6 would of closed the gap if not put it in front in this department now) the Aurion has the smoothest driveline of the bunch but that’s about it’s only trump card.

    Kampfer, as others have stated the falcon gets ANCAPs 5 star rating across the range and even with the the lack of standard curtain airbags the Falcon was not only the first Australian built car to receive 5 stars it still has a considerably higher overall points score than its competitors that followed, mainly the Aurion and Commodore.

    On the insurance front, you should be able to get an FG XR6 insured for around 500 pa. I pay about 780 pa on my BF F6 through AAMI.

    • handshandy

      Your post, 1 Star

  • ohreally

    A far superior dash to the commodores,

    Why would anyone want to look at a screen thats well below eye level?
    The materials might not be the best, but the layout is convenient, and it looks great.

    If I was in the market for a large sedan, i think the G6 limited edition with leather would be the pick for me. Although it doesnt have that sexy zf auto

  • Byron

    Pretty poor review overall. FG looks good on the outside & beats VE on areas too obviously, but the inside is a different story. We all thought VE is bad on the inside, which i agree obviously, but look at that shot of the FG interior. It looks terrible. I’d rather the VE steering wheel than the fat one of the FG. I’ve sat in a FG limited edition GE front seat a couple months back & found the interior to be too squishy, the dash too big & close to where you seat & too in-your-face styling. Look at the photo of the back seat. Talk about cheap. VE has better seats. I found the plastics were pretty poor & on par with VE, which is pretty funny too.

    I sat in a VE Omega front seat, 3-4 months back & found that the overall interior was spacious & pretty decent. I know VE has aged rapidly on the inside & i agree the plastics are pretty poor but they’re not the worst around, thats for sure. But i found that just the setout of the dash & the dials etc.. that go with it are pretty good. Sitting in the front seat gives you room to move around & you’re not faced with this huge dash. Once VE gets the exterior/interior facelift, i think Commodore will be back on top in terms of Engine/Styling… v.s FG Falcon. Should be interesting too what changes will occur inside/outside? Bring on VF Commodore. Go HOLDEN!

    • Andrew M

      Its a matter of what you are used to a lot of the time and sometimes not so much which is the better arrangement.

      Ive gone the other way from being used to falcons, jump in the commy.
      I couldnt stand the seating position (made me feel like i should be pumping doof doof), I also found the ergonomics poor especially the functionality of the steering wheel.

      Not that the commodore was a bad cockpit, but the falcons quality is certainly better. design wise it comes down to being use to where everything is that will unsettle most

  • Al Juraj

    It’s funny the XR6 is offered in LPG with the weaker engine and (groan) 4-speed auto. It would be pathetic for one to buy such ending up losing to his neighbour’s fleet petrol XT.

    This would have been a really nice looking car if it didn’t have great resemblance to the BF. It’s very slick compared to the boxy, dated VE. The engine is a great balance of performance, pulling power and economy. Ford can still do a lot for this motor, like employing direct injection to extract more power. A few hundred more revs before the redline would make it perfect.

    Sadly, this is yet unappreciated despite all the honest efforts in building a bonafide Aussie car. If Ford could stick the Australian-Made kangaroo triangle on its windshield, it would possibly double its sales.

    • jack

      I like the bit about the kangaroo. How about a sticker of the crash-test dummy kangaroo that our local car companies are supposed to have!

  • The Realist

    “Greater Street Credibility”?

    With who?

  • F6

    How anyone could call the FG interior cheap is beyond me. Its a well known fact that the FG interior is very very good, except to the people here who are totally biased. Why would anyone even compare the FG to the VE in any area is stupid……the FG is still a way better car in all areas and even with the non direct injection engine the driveline is still better than anything Obama owned Holden can dish up.

  • Wazza of South Aust


    • ABMPSV

      You should try Golf GTI or Skoda Octavia RS. You will change your mind!!!

      • toxic_horse

        you are officially the biggest goose on this site.

      • Hung Low

        Will he also need a peticure, waxing and handbag to go with the VW and a paper bag for the Skoda?

      • PJK

        no, I wouldn’t. My brother owns a Golf and it spends as much time in the dealers workshop as it does on the road. And the Skoda’s a joke. why would you pay money for anything that ugly???

  • Joe

    I’m sure that all of the Holden fans can’t wait for the VF to arrive, whenever that is? But let’s not forget the FG upgrade or Series II? is due by the middle of the year as well.

    With the ZF 6 spd auto becoming standard equipment, EURO IV compliant engines and the new E-Gas engine arriving soon after that,and whatever(if any)other changes also happening, there will be even more divided opinions and fun and games for all.

    • Deco

      Both cars should be magnificant =].

  • atomic22

    my dad has an sv6 great car so much room, i sat in an xr6 recently and it seemed really small in the back/front compared to the commodore.

    • Byron

      Yeh i know same here, too squishy & in your face styling in the Falcon, but Commodore is bigger in all directions, the dash doesn’t stick out at you & the back seat is really comfortable to sit in. Funny cause a Copper was showing us his Commodore at school the other day & everyone said they wanted one & that the seats looked comfortable. I agree 😀 Go HOLDEN!

      • adam (aka mada)

        Take a read through the interior dimentions listed on the Ford and Holden websites and the opposite is actually.

        So no need to exagerate or streth the truth.

        • XR6

          The Falcon interior does FEEL smaller but personally I dont think this is a bad thing, it gives a sense of security. But in real dimensions its very similar. I think the XR6 has very comfortable seats which are also quite supportive. I dont think you can fault it. I personally think the interior on the XR6 is far more modern than the Commodore, which it umm actually is, being a more recent model.

      • jack

        Hey Byron,

        Your history assignment for today is to go through real Australian automotive history and see which car was fully designed here, on a unique Aussie platform with more Aussie parts, for longer. You can google it if you wish. And cut and paste, or quote others’ work as your own if you desire.

        You might be surprised, particularly after 1984…

        Go AUSTRALIA!

      • t

        and most of the kids who liked it will see the inside of a cop car rather often too i bet.

        at least we know boganism will survive a bit longer.

  • Locked Diff

    Byron……thats right .they all said they wanted one because one kid said he wanted one…….typical sheep mentality of Holden bogans. lol lol lol I am amazed some people are happy to part with their money for a car that is so obviously the worst in the large car class……..as is agreed by every comparison that has the Commode placed last. When I buy a new car I want to spend my money on a car that is the best in the class……..in my case it would be the FG XR6 Turbo.

    • Byron

      If it was a Falcon instead of the Commodore or any car infact, one kid would of said they wanted one & that the seats look comfortable & all the other students all would of said it too cause he said he wanted one…typical sheep mentality of Ford bogans lolol

      • handshandy

        You two keep putting those coins in the piggy bank, one day you’ll be able to have a drag, see whats quickest an EA or a VN.

        • t

          are there any of either left?

          ah theres a few vns, bogans and atsi folk LOVE THEM to bits!

      • t


        ive found people buy fords because THEY like them.

        people buy commodores because EVERYONE ELSE likes them.

        commodore guys all have something to prove, love how they all seem to get their right arm tattood so they can hang it out the window.


  • Shak

    Falcon= Better Interior
    Commodore= better exterior
    Commodore= Better engine
    Falcon= Better ‘box

    Just my opinion…

    • adam (aka mada)

      change the engine to ‘falcon’ the new sidi Ves are rather overated for fuel consumption and NVH.

    • t

      see this gets me

      the fg is sleek and looks a bit jaguarish, whilst ve is boxy and looks 80s volvoish with NO design to it. The grill is far too high on the front, making it look like the front off of a triton / hilux ute style vehicle.

      even the yanks put the grill where it should be on their version of the VE.

      commodore better engine? MAN! drugs much???

      • XR6

        In my opinion:

        Item : 1st – 2nd – 3rd
        Interior : Falcon – Aurion – Commodore
        Exterior : Commodore – Falcon – Aurion
        Engine : Aurion – Falcon – Commodore
        Transmission : Aurion – Falcon – Commodore
        Handling : Falcon – Commodore – Aurion

        • Al Juraj

          Aside from front-end design, where else does the VE excel? Performance? Economy? Dashboard? Reliability? Maybe the handbrake lever? Ah, brainwashing!

          FG – Aussie engine, chassis, pretty much everything, and they do work very well in performance and handling. A little bit of shortcuts in some areas, but indeed honestly great value for those who need a big, no-nonsense ride. Footbrake and bland interior ruin it for the Aurion (its Camry sibling also looks better front and back).

  • adam (aka mada)

    No split folding seats in VE or sport front buckedt seats in SV6, also why Holden persists in placing the remote boot release button in the glove comartment is beyound me…

    They need to change to asoft touch rubber button, like FG’s, where the rear licence plate light bulbs are located.

  • Ford Rulz

    Falcons are betta cos they can go side wayz betta

  • thenameless

    “The extensive use of plastic in the cabin is a disappointment and tempers the spirited tone of the XR6.”
    Last time I checked all cars have plastic interiors…..

  • t

    oh and one more thing to the holdenfolk

    COYOTE is coming!

    • Shak

      Ford and FPV already have more powerful V8s, with more torque, yet they still fall short to their red opponents.

  • FPV

    Listing a negative as ‘Lacks XR excitement’ is interesting. So was this listed against an Aurion ZR6 for example as well? It also lacks the excitement of the XR6T. That negative is rubbish.

  • John

    Have owned the Fg XR6 NA since release. Would have got the turbo if money permitted. Drove it and the direct competitors. Had to buy it. Has been a great faultless car to date. For the money it’s a great package all round. Impressive for a NA 6, especially on premium 98 RON fuel. The 18 inch XR 5-spoke Wheels really complete the look.

    • John

      Totally agree. The 18 in XR wheels make the car look even better.

  • ALEX

    dont compare aurion with falcon.
    Aurion is a camry with a v6 engine, that\’s it.

    If you guys go to china, you can see aurion, yes exactly same from outside but with a four cylinder engine.


    SO, what is AURION? There is no aurion ,there is only camry.

  • mufti

    a stock standard BA XT 4 speed cogger $7500 with 250,000k on clock will keep up with this very easily, and worst of all when you compare them value versus performance that old XT whether BA or BF are still 95% mechanically identical to a current FG 4.0L motor which is based on what else but on the initial and original BA hardware. Therefore what ever you do, get yourself a nice 2nd hand BA XR6 Turbo 4 speed auto with a single spinner 3.23:1 diff and enjoy the torque from $10000-15000, or even better a BF XR6 Turbo for $18000-20000 now days. I played with a few N/A FG XR6 Falcons and they are the same as a petrol BA XT N/A. No difference, well may be 0.50 or 100th of a second.
    ps: get a nice 6.0L L76 VZII Calais, don’t waste your money on a I6 or a V6. Be smart. Stock VZ Calais 6.0 will do 50km more per full fuel tank than any SIX CYLINDER car including an I6 FG yet will still give you a nice 225rwkw stock from the factory and still keep up and even beat a G6E Turbo.

    • Jack

      Interesting perspective. The 6L VZII is definitely underrated, and in the future might be more collectable than the early 6L VE. Much lighter weight.

  • mufti

    ps: aurion is a slow vehicle that makes a miserable 200kW at pretty high 6400rpm, we see lots of office chicks driving aurions and we tend to hear them brag 200kW, 200kW blah blah blah blah, with out even knowing that those 200kW are not accessible unless you get that miserable 3.5L or basically a 3.4L V6 above 6000rpm, and who takes their cares or pushes them that hard in 60k speed limit?

    if aurion did not come with a close ratio 6 speed auto and was coupled with a piece of crap 4 speed camry auto, it would be doing 9s times 0-100km/h while a 3.0L camry does 10-11s 0-100km/h on a good day.

    put the 6 speed auto gearbox on a BA XT 4.0 or a BF or FG and we’re talking about under 6s or 6s flat acceleration.

    Thanks to Fords TORQUE and decent power levels and at lower RPM where you need it! and not at unreachable 6400rpm!!!!

    ps: 336Nm of torque at 4700rpm , what a joke! at 4700rpm

    wake up you aurion drivers, sell aurion and get a Falcon BA-FG.

  • mufti

    meaning … couple a gearbox that has identical final diff drive ratio and gear ratios as what Aurion has, put that gearbox together with a Falcon 4.0L BA,BF,FG engines and you will see an easy 5.8s 0-100km/h.

  • jerry

    in 08 i got one of these in non turbo guise replacing my bf mk1 i got in 2005. bf mk1 was a manual so it was quicker and more responsive than fg xr6 six speed zf that i got new in 08, realizing how much money i have wasted the 08 fg xr6 drove pretty much like an old petrol powered ba 4.0 4 speed auto and it felt the same engine response wise was perhaps a little stiffer but no way as good or economical as a manual bf xr6 n/a. so i decided to sell this slug of a car and for $22000 i got meself a used 06 vz calais 6.0 4 speed auto, and i am not looking back ever again at any other car, at least for another 10-15 years, getting one in silver soon for me wife, mine’s white, cant beat cheap luxury and cheap power form L76 chev v8, they’re light and powerful, how does 0-100k in 5.4s sound like for $22000 and a complete waste of money 7.1s for fg xr6 n/a. i wish i bough a vzii calais in 2006.

  • jeff

    so my little 1.6 mini is as quick 0-100 as a xr6 7.1 0-100

  • lila

    your little 1.6L mini may be as quick as this up to 100ks but until that point you are really thrashing it while the 4.0L I6 is relaxed and in its de-tuned Australian weather programmed tune. Its 4.0L so its over 130% larger in capacity hence its relaxed engine operation and long life/reliability factor. Overall your way too small mini will do a similar time 0-100km/h but that is all the car will do anyway, smaller cars with smaller engines are pretty much let free by the manufacturers to compensate for a lack of drive ability and tractability on the road hence the reason for them having LESS torque management parameters installed in the TCU and ECU to protect the drive train since most 1.6L N/A and Turboed cars clutches are designed to handle more than the engine can output yet those with larger engines such as 2.5L onwards need to be de-tuned to protect other components that are made out of the same materials as what are used in 1.6L cars hence the real reason why a BA XT/BFXT/FG XT and their sister models such as N/A XR6 will do 7 to 7.1s 0-100km/h.

    The mini will keep up to around 90km/h, the FG XT/XR6 will then simply continue accelerating freely towards 140km/h while the mini will still struggle to reach 120, there will be a pause after about 100km/h where it would take about 4-5s for the 1.6 mini to actually reach 120km/h while by that time FG XR6 4.0L N/A 195kW/391Nm on regular RON91 will be doing close to 160km/h.

    So the real difference between a stock standard 4 speed Falcon BA XT or BF XT with either 4 speed or 6 speed auto or an FG XT 5 or 6 speed auto or G6 or XR6 with either 5 or 6 speed auto is after about 100km/h.

    There is not a single naturally aspirated car on the market under 3.0L in engine capacity that can out sprint a 3.6L port or direct injected VE Commodore or a 4.0L EF/EL/AU/BA/BF/FG Falcon in both OHC and DOHC engine heads.

    There is no vehicle at 2.0L engine capacity that can be bench marked with these larger Commodores and Falcons, particularly with later stuff.

    A $6,999 2003 BA XT will outpace a $34,999 Mazda 6, beat it for safety minus the fancy stuff such as ipod connection/integration/and fancy bluetooth tech gadgets…

    it will eat it for money vs value/performance and it will beat it ten fold for reliability.

    So get yourself a nice BA/BF Fairmont GHIA I6 4.0 or a V8 5.4 and enjoy a cheap luxury car at as low as $10,000 and they are cheap now! plus have great sound system too….
    or better get a 2nd hand VYII Calais 5.7 or VZ/VZII with a nice 6.0L LS2 with L76 heads….. they literally eat anything in their path…..are big, reliable, cheap , sound great, feel great and handle great…..
    from personal experience a 260kW/510Nm VZ SS beats a 315kW/551Nm FPV GT-P, so get a bargain, these big cars are cheap!

    • Depressed

      There’s 5 minutes of my life I wont get back. Wait until the road gets twisty again and the Falcon wont get near the mini….I’d rather have the smaller fun car and not have to take out a loan for fuel….

  • Robert

    Hey Jeff,
    Stick a few bodies in the mini and see how she goes. Torque is king. I have a Fg 6 Speed auto and it pulls like a train right through to very illegal speeds.
    The Falcon is superior to the Commodore with its more accomplished chassis. I have driven both brands extensively and find the Ford easier to drive harder and more composed in all situations.
    Mine was a showroom demo with 75 klms which I purchased 4 months ago for $28950 drive away. A hell of a lot of car for the money and is’nt that what it is all about these days?

  • Suntory Time

    I’m always amused by car journos that knock a car’s interior plastics in this segment of the market.

    The interior quality of the FG Falcon is on par with the last 5 series BMW, which didn’t have stellar cabin plastics either… the BMW though, cost 100k plus mind you.

  • Grahame

    My son in-law bought his new Falcon less than a year ago. Its back at Ford for the second major problem This time it won’t start last time major engine problems. They paid $37000 & have been offerred by Ford $22000 & its still under guarantee.
    Anybody else out there with similar problems?

  • Renah_77

    I’m trading my 2011 diesel Santa fe for a 2011 ford XR6 today… I hope I’m doing the right thing..

  • Debtammick

    ive got a 2006 xr6 ford, horn doesnt work, i went to ford and brought some fuses, and a horn relay…..but cant find out were to put the relay my manal doesnt show were it is….can anyone help me

    • Robin_Graves

      try fordforums dot com dot au.  Have you had a look in the manual? It would show the fuse panel layout.  Sometimes the clock spring behind the steering wheel is a problem, normally has an airbag warning light as well. The fuses / relays are either behind the panel near your right knee or under the bonnet near the battery.

Ford Falcon Specs

Car Details
Body Type
New Price
Private Sale
$11,660 - $13,250
Dealer Retail
$13,040 - $15,510
Dealer Trade
$9,300 - $10,600
Engine Specifications
Engine Type
Engine Size
Max. Torque
371Nm @  2750rpm
Max. Power
156kW @  4750rpm
Pwr:Wgt Ratio
Bore & Stroke
Compression Ratio
Valve Gear
Drivetrain Specifications
Drive Type
Final Drive Ratio
Fuel Specifications
Fuel Type
Fuel Tank Capacity
Fuel Consumption (Combined)
16.2L / 100km
Weight & Measurement
Kerb Weight
Gross Vehicle Weight
Not Provided
Ground Clearance
Towing Capacity
Brake:2300  Unbrake:750
Steering & Suspension
Steering Type
Turning Circle
Front Rim Size
Rear Rim Size
Front Tyres
215/60 R16
Rear Tyres
215/60 R16
Wheel Base
Front Track
Rear Track
Front Brakes
Rear Brakes
Front Suspension
Control Link, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Rear Suspension
Leaf spring, Hydraulic double acting shock absorber
Standard Features
Power front seat Driver
Control & Handling
Electronic Brake Force Distribution
Cruise Control, Power Steering, Trip Computer
Radio CD with 4 Speakers
Power Mirrors
Cloth Trim, Power Windows
Dual Airbag Package, Anti-lock Braking, Seatbelts - Pre-tensioners Front Seats
Central Locking Remote Control, Engine Immobiliser
Optional Features
Control & Handling
16 Inch Alloy Wheels, Traction Control System
Premium Sound System
Aluminium Tray, Metallic Paint, Tow Pack
Safety Pack
Service Interval
12 months /  15,000 kms
36 months /  100,000 kms
VIN Plate Location
Pass Side Eng Scuttle
Country of Origin