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Car reviews - Ford - Falcon - G6 EcoLPi sedan


Ford's Falcon EcoLPi is a compelling argument for the venerable Aussie large car

18 Nov 2011

FORD claims its latest LPG-fuelled Falcon costs less to refuel than a Toyota Corolla, but there has never been any serious question about the savings achievable by choosing an E-Gas Falcon over its petrol counterpart. Now, though, for the first time, there is no discernible loss of performance and throttle responsiveness.

Since July 2000, Falcon buyers have had the choice of a dedicated LPG variant with none of the compromises of the more common dual-fuel arrangement, but it never achieved the sales that might have been expected in a market steadily moving towards more fuel-efficient cars. Ford had claimed in 2000 that the additional outlay of about $800 could be recouped after just 15,000 to 20,000 kilometres.

LPG has been the preferred fuel for taxi operators since the late 1970s but the popularity of this alternative fuel with mainstream buyers has been much more in the conversion of older cars. For new car buyers, it is seen as perhaps rather too left-field compared with diesel.

Perhaps Ford’s impressively competent new EcoLPi models will see an increase in demand.
Model release date: 1 July 2011 to 1 October 2014

Previous model

Falcon LPG

Released: October 2005
Ended: April 2008
Family Tree: Falcon

THE LPG-only version of Ford’s excellent 4.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine was extensively revised for the BF Falcon (launched in October 2005). It produced 156kW of power at 4750rpm and 371Nm of torque at 2750rpm. Internal changes from the petrol engine included stronger connecting rods, different valves and hardened valve seats. , , Although its power and torque outputs were much improved over the first dedicated gas engine fitted to the AU Falcon from July 2000 (which made 143kW and 362Nm), it still fell a long way short of the petrol unit’s numbers. , , For its application in the FG range, the E-Gas engine was further revised and re-calibrated for improved overall drivability.

But there was an even more marked difference between the performance of petrol-engined and E-Gas cars than there had been in 2000. The FG’s petrol engine delivered 195kW and 391Nm, with the power deficit of 39kW more obvious than the torque shortfall of 20Nm. , , At FG launch, the E-Gas engine was teamed with a four-speed automatic transmission, which was very old technology considering the introduction of a four-speed automatic to the Falcon occurred back in 1989.

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