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Old 09-29-2002, 23:22   #1 (permalink)
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EA in Wheels' all-time top 10 Falcons. However...

Seeing that a list of the top 10 Falcons of all time was in Wheels magazine, it was the first thing I flicked through when the latest edition finally arrived today. To Wheels' credit, the EA was mentioned. The EB GT and ED XR6 (not the EB II?) also get a mention (but not the XR8 Sprint), as well as the XP, XR GT, XY GTHO Phase III, XA-XC hardtop, XE Ghia ESP, T3 T-Series, and BA. It would have been nice to see the XD or the XK there too, but obviously there wasn't room.

However, I am less impressed by the clearly biased article dedicated to the EA.

1988 EA
"Laugh if you like (and fair enough, really), but this series was regarded as one of the most handsome cars in the Ford empire - indeed the world - at its launch. EA might have been pretty, but early quality glitches with dampers, steering columns, panel fit and fuel injection quickly gave it the reputation of a dunger. And the crude three-speed auto stifled performance. But with quality refinements and body integrity improvements, the lame EA morphed into the much better EB and ED, and the highly successful EF and EL that carried Ford through the '90s."

Well and good, but what about the key defense of the EA, the performance of the manual MPI models? Wheels' own figures rate this car as the equal of many fancier vehicles. The FPV site made the point quite clearly. It's a shame Wheels didn't have the guts to show the whole story here, and I'm damn tempted to write to them saying as much.

Or perhaps we should keep it a secret, because anyone in a 'lame' manual EA outperforming more highly regarded cars will most certainly be getting the last laugh. :s5
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Old 09-29-2002, 23:31   #2 (permalink)
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I agree, I had a '88 EA Faimont Ghia 5 speed and it flew. Friends in the NSW police counld not believe it came from the same place as their cop cars!

I wish I had it still but alas it is gone.
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Old 09-30-2002, 03:50   #3 (permalink)
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Yeah, I also had a 5 spd manual EA Falcon, that was a quick car...
I'd be tempted to write in and tell em from people who know what they are talking about....

Either way, we get the last laugh....
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Old 10-01-2002, 19:03   #4 (permalink)
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Yeah I was pretty pissed when I read it too...
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Old 10-02-2002, 02:35   #5 (permalink)
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The only part that really pisses me off is referring to the EA as 'lame'. I think that's a bit un-called-for...

But realistically, I guess everything else they've said is true.


I've read much worse written about the EA in the past, and every bad thing that is written about them just makes me more and more proud of my EA. It's almost like we've got our own perfect little secret that nobody else ever seems to discover...



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Old 10-03-2002, 02:16   #6 (permalink)
 
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3 speed autos arn't crap they were actually better than the early 4 speeders were. Mine's been given hell and she's still going like a song 305,000 km later. In your face Wheels ~)
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Old 10-03-2002, 02:24   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by The Fonz
3 speed autos arn't crap they were actually better than the early 4 speeders were. Mine's been given hell and she's still going like a song 305,000 km later. In your face Wheels ~)
I think you've raised a good point Fonzy. Why the focus on the inefficient transmission and the otherwise limited quality, when you could also say the 3 speed transmission is damn high quality (long-lived, tough, cheap, reliable) while the rest of the car is at least thoroughly modern for its time. You couldn't really have it both ways at the time, but Ford did need more technology in its cars (compared to XF) and didn't have a whole lot of money to work with.

That's the bias I'm talking about. I haven't bothered to back track to the older Wheels Top 10 Commodores, but I guarantee you there won't be half the article detailing specific quality issues in the VT section.
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Old 10-03-2002, 02:39   #8 (permalink)
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Not to turn this into an EA bashing post but
Lame means crippled by injury or defect, sadly this is what the EA was, it's reputation was crippled by early build quality issues, while these issues may not have carried thru for the entire lifetime of the EA, the damage was done early on by the bad press it recieved. So lame is probably a very correct word for what wheels were trying to say.
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Old 10-03-2002, 03:56   #9 (permalink)
 
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Tongue o ye with little faith!

somebody hold me back- lol

With the poor quality issue I think it is debateable. The major problems with the EA (the first batch) were minor but overhyped faults. The radaitors ran too hot, constant leaks on the donk, head gaskets and the 3.2 OHC donk !? The radaitors simply needed better coolant (although if you replace your EA with a XF radaitor it goes even better can anybody confirm this?), the leaks were caused by dodgy cork sealing used and the 3.2 donks were scrapped (Bill Dix where are you now?). We never had any major diff , tranny, donk or body 'ridgility' problems either unlike some poor VN Commidorre users out there :)

The head gasked problem was overrated as only if you thrashed the crap out of the car you had problems. We originally were the poor sods with a 3.2, yes 92kw of pure unadulterated power. It was'nt that bad actaully though you rev'd a it little too high to get usable power. In the end the Ford dealer changed the donk for a small charge (200 bucks I recall- fitted). We never had a problem after that.

He was a great chap Ted Jones from Gravill Motors in Gosford, what a legend if only more customer service guys were like him. As we one of the first 'early' adopters of the EA we recived prompt and quality service most often free, you get don't much of that these days.

CFI is actually quite good and not as bad as it seems if you 'modify' the fuel pressure regulator (compress the unit and put a aftermarket spring in it) use a aftermarket map, hall sensor and hollow out the cat you've got a VN Commidorre killing machine.
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Old 10-07-2002, 01:25   #10 (permalink)
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yeah, even though EAs had problems when new (as does the first model of every new vehicle) they were nothing compared to the VN!!!

did you know that VNs in general had such a terrifying appetite for oil when first released that holden actually re-wrote the spec sheet to suggest that 1 litre of oil per 1000km was, in fact, ok?!?!?!?!?! WTF IS THAT!!!!! a 4 litre sump and 7.5L of oil use between services is ok?!?!?!?!?!?

not to mention the rear main seal and sump gasket leaks (still struggling to keep the oil in with VX!!) and the ever present power steer pump leaks.

how about the GIANT steering wheel, the wooden brake pedal and the accelerator that did all its work in the first third of its travel? and lets not forget the bonnet hinges that liked to seize on a regular basis so when you opened the bonnet the corners hit the windscreen and shattered it!!

WHEELS eats your heart out, EAs were (and still are) GOLD compared to the VN!!!!

(note this is not a emotionally driven post, these are all facts, check up on me if you like)
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