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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-03, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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Why did Ford drop V8s in XF?

Well I've often criticised the dropping of the V8 program in the XF years but now I'm curious as to why this happened? I'm interested in FFs take (serious and conspiracy theories) as to why they dropped the V8 Falcon and failed to replace it with any viable alternative and shot themselves in the foot and lost a generation of hoons.

Having done a lot of reading of my old man's old motor and wheels magazines over the years, there seems to be a trend of environmental consciousness and new found social responsibility for big corporations of the 80s, hence/evident in the sourcing of extra power from sources such as EFI and turbocharging. I also saw the XE turbo was a *production* model, however limited.

I have seen an article on XF twin-turbo 4wd variant a while back but as we know the top of the line XF was (for want of a better word ) simply an EFI thrown on the tired old carby 250xflow.

Was there a reason they didn't follow through with the turbo bit? Hell we could have a lot more of the doof doof brigade in XF Turbos :IHI:

Anyway keen to hear your replies
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-03, 09:19 PM
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Economics - simply not enough people were buying V8s.
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-03, 09:38 PM
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Fuel crisis? Isnt that the simple reason?
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-03, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, well why then did they bring it back in 1992?

If not enough people were buying V8s then how did holden survive? Did they have the superior product and pushed Ford out of the market?
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-03, 09:55 PM
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Ford decided to end V8 production and stocked piled engines thinking it would last until 1984. They ran out in 1982, remember the XE Ghia ESP's, great looking cars. Holden kept production because the car mags ( I think Motor) started a campaign to keep the Holden V8 going when they also announced they were going to stop. This is what saved Holden and cost Ford dearly because a generation of Ford fans had no V8 while Holden gained many fans that spilled over into second hand buyers for nearly 10 years. Hence the current generation of Holden V8 loyalists. Jack Nasser assumed the top job at ford and being a car nut he instigated the return of the V8 in the EB Falcon. However again these cars became affordable second hand models to the younger revheads some 5-8 years later still giving Holden a greater chance to maintain its base of loyal customers feeding on cheap secondhand VN-VR/VS models. Just as Ford started to win back the lost ground along came AU and looks that you loved or hated. More importantly the "swinging" buyers chose the more sporty/ macho / bigger looking VT and you probably know the history up until today. Holden seems to have the Rev-head/yob (no offence but I can't think of a better description) market at the moment where 0-100, 400m times are all that matters. Ford seems to have gone the more "sophisticated" route where steering, ride, balance are their priorities. Speed/times make headlines in the mags yet for someone in my age bracket/ family situation etc.. the latter is my preference and ideally I would love the sleeper looks of a Fairmont Ghia and the power of a Herrod modified Boss 220 putting out 290+kW...maybe one day Mr Herrod. Please correct me on any points of error

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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-03, 09:59 PM
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Reasons I have heard is because of the push for fuel effiecient cars which started from the XD the first of blackwood series (XD-XF).

By the time XE had came along the 351 Clevo was more like a special option rather than a standard fittment like the XD (even the last XE ESP was only fitted with a 302).

The introduction of the fuel injected 6 in XE, and continuation into XF probably lead them to think why do we need a v8? (we know the reason these days).

Funny bit was the lack of v8 didn't seem to hinder sales of the XF, I believe it continued to beat Holden Commodore sales, which had been achieved with the XE.

Another reason I have heard is that the XF fuel injected 6 was to have about the same kw's as the 302 so with this and economy in mind the v8 was droped.

The twin turbo XF 4WD was an experiment, while they had awesome power they cost too much to build so they never went into full production. (If they had of been built in production number they could have been a direct competitor to Nissuns GTR)

I believe however, single turbo XF's were built, but I don't know how many.

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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-22-03, 11:22 PM
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Government ADR requirements also pushed the development dollar too far to justify continuation of the V-8's.

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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-23-03, 12:02 AM
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The Clevo was also on its last legs as a production engine and eventually would have to be made to run unleaded and all for a handful of sales. Even Ford USA didn't convert the Clevo to unleaded, preferring to go back to the Windsor.

The late 70's/early 80's fuel chrisis wouldn't have helped the V8 cause neither and as curls mentioned Holden were going to drop the V8 but the V8 til 98 campaign convinced Holden to keep it.

The injected 6 pot was marketed as having the same power as the 4.9 V8 with the economy of a six to try and keep traditional V8 Ford buyers - basically Fairlanes at that point.

As for the Turbos, Dick Johnson was the man who developed the XE turbo and he tried to market it through Ford, but from memory it was knocked back at the last minute.

The twin turbo 4wd XF wasn't a Ford project neither, it was built by AIT (Adcanced Induction Technology), I believe 2 where made and pne possibly went to the UK, the 4wd system was a UK sourced Furguson unit. It was a well engineered car and under the bonnet, looked factory with the larger turbo plenum chamber matching the alloy rocker cover.

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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-23-03, 01:23 AM
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IMO Ford dropped the V8 because they believed that the generation of Econo Boxes(tm) had arrived and forgot to check with the buying public. The fact that the V8s ran out 2 years before they planned must have given them a hint that maybe they were on the wrong track. Appreantly they had their heads too far up their fundamental orifice to go and check.
Seems like another case of a marketing department telling people what they want rather than asking them.
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 05-23-03, 02:31 AM
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Ford at the time thought that the V8 market was going to dispear due to the average fuel economy and so they focused on the I6 engine for the Falcon, figuring that Holden would do the same.

How the times change, the new base Falcon I6 has more power (182 kW vs 149 kW) than the last of the Clevelands and vastly better fuel economy.

Little did they know that in the end, Holden built a better V8 (the EFI 5.0 Litre) and the whole thing turned around. The EFI Holden V8 showed that a V8 could be powerful AND economical. Then Ford decided to get back into the act and import the 5.0 EFI Windsor from the Mustang and the rest is history.

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