It was 2012, and after owning a BA XR6 Turbo for close to seven years, I decided it was time for an update. I narrowed my search down to three similar cars, namely the FG variants of the FPV F6, G6E Turbo and XR6 Turbo (the latter two in 50th Anniversary spec.). I would have been happy with either of these and initially I was leaning toward the G6E but I figured I would forego a couple of creature comforts and experience what FPV had to offer. This F6 came in the rare metallic Velvet colour that I thought looked amazing.
So, how did the F6 compare to the BA XR6 Turbo? Well, the extra two ratios of the ZF gearbox was probably the biggest notable difference in driving. Initial pickup was a bit quicker and at highway speeds, the engine ticked over about 400rpm lower. Fuel economy improved to 11.9L/110km, bettering the BA’s 12.2L. The BA was tuned to about 300kW, so the extra power and torque (310kW/565Nm) of the F6 was not as noticeable as you would expect, but it did feel a little smoother and more refined. Ride quality and handling was quite similar. I liked the information screen located between the speedo and tacho dials that displayed digital speed and trip computer data. The larger infotainment screen incorporated HVAC information, and reversing camera and the F6 came with iPod connectivity and Bluetooth. The seven speaker audio system was identical to the premium audio upgrade of the BA. It has been written by motoring journo’s ad-nauseam that the steering wheel could not be adjusted high enough in the FG series, but I never felt it was an issue and I’m 6’4”. The upper door and dash trim took a backward step as they were lacking the softer feel of the BA.
I loved the styling of the FPV’s. There was enough to differentiate them from standard Falcons and yet it was not as lairy as the HSV’s of the time. It was a shame the F6 only got the single exhaust outlet because the dual pipes were reserved for the GT and GT-P only. I thought the optional 19-inch dark argent rims were the best of the FPV wheels and the distinctive ‘racoon eyes’ under the headlights were a nice touch.
As the engine output would suggest, sinking the boot into the F6 produced some colossal acceleration. This was best felt with a rolling start because the standard 245mm wide rear tyres had little hope of maintaining traction from a standing start. Many cars nowadays let rip with a fart between gearshifts, but an F6 on full boost farts so hard you are convinced it has followed through.
After about 12 months with the F6, my eye started to wander to some European badges. Maybe it was because after owning XC, XD and BA Falcons, an FE LTD and now the F6 (plus a couple of Hyundai’s), I wanted to try something more “premium”. Maybe there was growing frustration that I could not utilise enough of the F6 performance in ever-increasing traffic. Maybe the dealer trade-in offer was too good to refuse – who knows but in the blink of an eye, the F6 was gone and occupying the garage space was a 2010 VW Passat CC V6.