Hey who said you need money to make a new series look at the VX and VXII commodores!! The VXII has a total of $16 spent on it, and that includes a big step in suspension and a new cruise control controller thingy and a bunch of wild new colours.
Sure ford could make a AU III with out spending much at all (in R&D anyway) to help move the last of the AU's before the all desireable AV lands..
Phidos low cost AU III plan:
-Put a/the VCT engine into the live axel XR6 or SR (limited edition?)
-200 Kw V8 in all V8 options?
-Fog/driving lights standard on the entire range
-Series III badges
-One or Two new colours
-White or Colour coded dials (steal them from the t-series, the AV t series is getting a 250/260Kmph speedo right?)
-Clear indicators at the front
-Shift light on the SR, XR6, XR8 and all manuel Falcons.
-Change the the font on Fairmont or Fairlane or SR
-a new wheel cover for steelys
-some steel mesh or added chrome strips
-minor niggles fixed like door seals some cable ties and spacers to stop rattles
There you have it, AU III. Almost zero in cost. Perhaps I have over done it with the upgrades in the potential AU III, clear indicators, series III badges, cable ties and badge font change may be enough.
Even better dealers could upgrade there entire stock to AUIII spec with a single sealed plastic bag containing, clear indicators, colour globes, series III badges, 8 cable ties, wheel covers, series III book and special series III carmats.
Ford should have really just called the AU's after the 220Kw XR8 AUIII for marketing purposes, added to the rest of the range is the forementioned AUIII dealer pack..
Thats what Holden does, sure its a sad upgrade, a upgrade none the less. People are always looking for value, even if its not real.
Ford doesn't have to spend money developing it at all, here at Phido Technica Engineering (PTE) have diligently engineered it inhouse.
Oh yeh, rename FTE to FTX, to get the full xperience, those who need power don't have time to read redundant first letters.