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Ford comes out fighting with $36k G6 special

Fighting words: The Falcon GS Limited Edition is $13,000 better value, says Ford.

Falcon G6 price slashed in limited edition as Ford rattles new Commodore’s cage

11 Sep 2009

FORD Australia has rained on Holden’s parade by announcing a massively discounted limited-edition version of its popular mid-range G6 Falcon at a driveaway price of $36,490, just as its cross-town rival launches its updated MY10 Commodore direct-injection V6 range.

According to Ford, that’s effectively $13,000 in extra value over the standard 4.0-litre 195kW six-cylinder G6. More importantly, it is cheaper by more than $3000 than the regular entry level models of either the Ford Falcon or Holden Commodore ranges, and yet is much better equipped than either base model.

The entry-level Falcon XT that is popular with fleets has a list price of $39,290, plus statutory and dealer delivery charges.

Holden’s new base model is the new 190kW 3.0-litre Spark Ignition Direct Injection (SIDI) Commodore Omega priced at $39,990 plus statutory charges and other on-road costs.

What’s more, the Falcon G6 Limited Edition gets $4000 worth of extra features – or “$4000 net retail value”, in Ford-speak – over the standard G6, which is usually priced at $42,490. These include 18-inch alloy wheels, side curtain airbags, leather-detailed seat trim, leather wrapped steering wheel with audio and cruise control buttons, iPod integration and Bluetooth.

27 center imageUnique colour accent treatments on various body trims, fog lamp bezels, a rear bumper insert and ubiquitous Limited Edition badge are also included.

Ford is planning to build 1500 of the G6 Limited Editions, with roughly a 70/30 split between petrol and E-Gas LPG. The E-Gas version is a $2000 option, but buyers get a $2000 government grant from the LPG Vehicle Scheme.

The G6 Limited Edition is effectively a cross between the G6 and more up-market G6E, and Ford Australia president Marin Burela has hinted this spec level might become a permanent feature of the Falcon range, with a possible consolidation of G6 and G6E into one.

Mr Burela said Ford would be watching the customer reaction to the G6 Limited Edition closely over the next few weeks with an eye to making further reductions in Falcon model complexity.

“Watch this space,” he said.

Holden has high hopes that the fuel-efficiency gains of its hi-tech 3.0-litre Commodore, which offers a class-leading 9.3L/100km average fuel consumption, will take fleet buyers away from Ford’s Falcon while also wooing back four-cylinder owners.

Clearly, Ford is not ready to let Holden walk off with its customers.

Ultimately, Ford will counter with its 2.0-litre four-cylinder EcoBoost turbo-charged four-cylinder engine from early 2011, which Mr Burela said would meet demands from fleets with a four-cylinder buying policy – something that no six-cylinder could match – as well as attracting customers wanting four-cylinder economy with large-car convenience.

He said Ford had set the agenda on local six-cylinder fuel-efficiency when it reduced the Falcon XT fuel consumption to 9.9L/100km (with six-speed auto transmission) in April, and it would continue to drive this agenda.

Mr Burela said Ford was working full-time to not only keep up with demand for Falcon and Territory, but was attempting to build extra cars to cover an upcoming annual leave shutdown of the Broadmeadows assembly plant which had been running without any down days since May.

He said demand for Territory was particular strong, with Ford short of stock.

“We are making about 900 a month and selling about 900 month,” he said. “We are basically building what we are selling.” Mr Burela said Territory’s model mix had swung to high-end models. Territory demand was once 60 per cent in favor of the low-end of the range, but now it was the reverse, with more than 60 per cent of demand for upper end variants.

Mr Burela said the addition of diesel power to Territory in 2011 would add another string to the home-grown SUV’s bow.

He said the 2.7-litre V6 diesel was a premium engine, taken from the Jaguar range As GoAuto reported recently, this 140kW engine is superseded in the Jaguar range, replaced by a more powerful variant shared with Land Rover and French car-maker PSA (Peugeot-Citroen).

While Ford’s G6 Limited Edition temporarily becomes the cheapest Falcon, it is not the most affordable locally-built six-cylinder. That honour still rests with Toyota’s $34,990 3.5-litre V6 Aurion AT-X, which, like the Falcon XT and Commodore Omega, is primarily aimed at fleets.

However, Toyota has a facelifted Aurion range imminent, and that price might change.

Toyota’s main Aurion sports model, the Sportivo SX6, is $38,990, while Holden’s V6 sports variant, the Commodore SV6, is $42,790, in line with the regular Falcon G6 price.

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