Ford Streetka Luxury
by Craig Cheetham
Five... Four... Three... Two... One... and Auto Express is Go! We are the first magazine to get behind the wheel of 'Fab Too', the striking pink Ford Streetka created to promote the new Thunderbirds film.
We picked up the glamorous movie star from the driveway of Creighton-Ward Manor, home of Thunderbirds commander-in-chief Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward, and better known as Cliveden Manor in Berkshire.
Lady P wasn't there when we stopped by, but luckily we'd been given the secret code to open the entrance hatch and retrieve the keys - so we could see for ourselves exactly what impact Ford's sparkling pink paintjob and bespoke interior would have on the unsuspecting British public.
What grabs you first is FAB Too's remarkable presence. The standard Ford Streetka is stylish yet timid; nearly too cute to impose itself on our crowded roads. But FAB Too is difficult to miss.
It might be more 'Tracy and Sharon' than Tracy Island, yet for those who love to be seen, it will certainly leave you in the pink. The car is exactly the same shocking hue as the gargantuan Ford Thunderbird-based Fab 1, which replaced Lady P's trademark pink Rolls-Royce after the BMW-owned firm opted not to get involved in the puppet show's transition to the silver screen. Its pink paint has a chrome finish, which is hard to detect in photographs, but deliberately reflects light away from the angle you view the Ford so as not to cause too much of a glare on camera.
Fab Too is Lady P's commuting car. It's far more suited to town use than the enormous six-wheeler Fab 1, as underneath the lurid paintjob it's exactly the same as a standard Streetka - right down to its 94bhp 1.6-litre engine.
But somehow it delivers a completely different experience from behind the wheel. If you are the kind of person who loves attention, this machine comes into its own when cruising along busy streets - top down, of course. It turns heads like puppets on strings - the last time as many people crowded round to look at a Streetka, it was on a motor show stand with Kylie Minogue perched on the bonnet. This is no car for the shy and retiring, but if there's enough demand, International Rescue may force Ford into offering a limited-edition derivative of the colour - although its sister model, Fab 1, certainly won't see production.
Ford Streetka Luxury
Ford said Fab Too's paintjob was a one-off for the film. But such is the interest in the car, if there are enough requests it could become an option. Thunderbirds fans beware, though - the Streetka is a soft-top, so in British weather, the Hood could win you over. Fab Too is just the thing for a rosey Parker!
At a Glance
* Fab Too is based on Streetka
* Pink paintjob created especially for new Thunderbirds movie