This is a serious Aussie muscle car, despite the absence of a large capacity V8
- 2009 FPV FG Falcon F6 310; 4.0-litre, six-cylinder, turbo-petrol; six-speed automatic; sedan - $67,890*
- Metallic Paint $NCO; Premium Brakes $6375; Dark Agent 19-inch Alloy Wheels $1122; Satellite Navigation $3230; Leather Upholstery $2962; Power Adjustable Pedals $353; Reverse Camera $705
You can’t always believe what’s printed in car brochures, especially those describing performance cars. They tend to be a little over enthusiastic at times.
“With 310kW of power and 565Nm of torque available from just 1950rpm, the all-new F6 delivers in-gear acceleration that has to be experienced to be believed”.
"That’s what the FPV brochure says... but I know what you’re thinking; it’s only a six-cylinder Falcon with a turbocharger and body kit. I mean how quick can it be?"
Trust me, when I say the above quote from the Ford Performance Vehicles is no marketing spin, and ‘seriously fast’ is not a strong enough description of what happens when you drop the right pedal in this car and leave it there for a few seconds. “Gone baby gone” is more like it.
This is a serious Aussie muscle car, despite the absence of a large capacity V8 engine or better.
Its not like the previous model F6 Typhoon was short on power, but FPV have pulled off the gloves with the latest F6 edition, 40kW (270kW-310kW) is a serious upgrade when you factor in the whopping 565Nm this hot rod puts out.
While so called turbo lag is virtually non existent and off the mark acceleration is jet like (but not unruly), the F6 310’s principle weapon is its in-gear acceleration, which will leave you breathless and wondering just how quick you can put the finance together.
That’s 565Nm of g-force pulling surge all the way from 1950rpm through to 5200rpm, which feels decidedly supercar like, whenever you bury the throttle from a lazy 80km/h.
That said it would take a brave soul to punch the throttle for anything longer than eight seconds in the F6, such is the unrelenting build up of speed this thing delivers.
The F6 310 is one of those cars, which instantly feels quicker than its generally accepted sprint time of 0-100km/h in 4.96 seconds. In fact, it feels a lot quicker than that.
Nonetheless, Dean Evans from Tarmac magazine ran some on-track acceleration runs in the F6 and confirmed 4.9 seconds to my surprise, but also ran a 12.9 second quarter mile with the needle nudging 181km/h.
You have to keep reminding yourself that this is a comfortable, if not luxurious, large four-door family car, which doesn’t mind shopping mall outings.
Thank god for traction control though, because when you do nail it, you can feel the 245/35 Dunlop SP Sport Maxx tyres desperately trying to grip the tarmac and put the power down.
I’d like to say that 265’s might be a better fit, but I’m not so sure about that, as the electronic nannies make it a breeze to handle.
If you’re coming out of bog standard salesman’s special, such as a Falcon XT or Holden equivalent, take care, as this thing will scare the bejesus out of you, or indent a permanent smile on your face, when you punch it for the first time.
That feeling is amplified ten-fold when you engage the mid-range afterburner, or so it seems, from 80km/h to 120km/h in a sizzling 2.7 seconds. The F6 will max out at a speed-limited 250km/h, should you be lucky enough to have an airport runway with ‘big jet’ capability at your disposal.
The method by which FPV engineers have achieved the extra grunt is not overly scientific, but as simple as strengthening the piston design and dialling up the boost on the Garrett turbo.
But while there’s a tonne of boost on tap and the turbo spools up rapidly, the power delivery remains surprisingly smooth.
There’s induction noise all right, but it’s been dialled down in comparison to the previous Typhoon, which makes this G Series edition, an easier car to live with as a daily drive.
While you can certainly engage the sequential sports shift option if you need to get moving during an overtake, its best to flick the shifter across to the left into sports mode, and let the ZF six-speed auto do its thing. It’s a rapid cog shift and better still, allows your retinas to recalibrate the lens in your eyes to accommodate what has just become a blur.
It seems any car remotely associated with performance these days wears a set of Brembo brakes, but there are Brembos and there are Brembos, these monsters fitted to the F6 are of the latter kind.
Try six-pot calipers up front and four-pot down the back, and while they’re optional, I wouldn’t have it any other way, as their stopping power is prodigious.
But don’t think for one minute that every time you tap the throttle, that the F6 is going to go ballistic on you. This is the ultimate Jekyll and Hyde car.
Like most refined speedsters these days, there’s a softer side to all that power.
Drive the F6 without a light foot, as I have done several times this week (in truth not many times) and it’s quite happy to dawdle off to the mall with the kids for the weekly grocery shop.
It’s only when you drive with the intent of flying low, is the lethal power unleashed and your torso pinned to the seat-back of these exceptionally comfortable leather pews, which thankfully cater for a wide variety of body shapes
And while the ride is firm, you couldn’t call it stiff or uncomfortable. If anything, I’d like the option of stiffer spring rates and less movement in the dampers, which might just eliminate the slight body roll on turn in, which currently exists during what can only be deemed as enthusiastic driving.
Despite my personal preferences though, FPV have provided a perfectly liveable balance between ride comfort and handling with the F6.
It looks the part too, especially in this particular paint job they call Dash. It wouldn’t be my first choice, far too much attention from the boys in blue I would think.
The 19-inch graphite wheels look sensational, as does the aerodynamic body kit, which is all rather tasteful.
However, I’m not sure why FPV have gone for the single exhaust tip though, as there is no question in my mind, that twin exhaust tips provide a more balanced look and purposeful look to anything with a factory performance badge.
But I do like the aggressive stance of the F6, with the exposed intercooler through the front splitter, looking like a scene from The Fast and the Furious.
There’s a heap of room in the cabin too with ample head and leg space (front and back), even for those of abnormal height or above my 176 centimetres.
Boot space is plentiful although, not as much depth as I would have expected, but put that down to a full size alloy spare under the floor.
While the leather used to upholster the seats and trim is of a high quality, I’m not a fan of the metal look plastic inserts embellishing the fascia and door trim, as they cheapen the overall feel of what is a respectable interior.
But as far as equipment and creature comforts go, it’s all here including: Reverse parking camera and sensor along with an exceptionally good audio system with full iPod integration. What isn’t standard kit, is satellite navigation, which for this kind of money, probably should be.
And if you’re concerned about fuel economy or are a member of the Greens, my guess is you won’t be reading this review, but despite the ballistic performance of the F6, 12.2L/100km (ADR) and 289 grams of CO2 emissions per kilometre, is highly commendable.
Even at $67,890, I can’t find any other six-cylinder, four-door sedan in the world, which comes close to rivalling the supercar like performance of FPV’s F6.
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