Ford’s pol­ished per­form­ers

Up­graded FPVs get cleaner en­gines, writes Stu­art Martin

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Onroad -

MORE badges and lower emis­sions head­line the FPV range up­grade be­fore much-an­tic­i­pated V8s later this year. FPV par­ent com­pany Pro­drive en­gi­neered the Euro IV changes for the Ford and FPV ver­sions of the tur­bocharged six-cylin­der en­gine.

FPV head of pow­er­train and chas­sis Bernie Quinn says it made sense for one group to do both jobs. ‘‘The big change was a new cat­a­lyst,’’ he says. ‘‘We’ve gone to a lat­est-gen­er­a­tion metal ma­trix cat­a­lyst.’’

Quinn says the cat­a­lyst quickly heats up to cut the pow­er­plant’s emis­sions to meet the Euro IV reg­u­la­tions with­out sac­ri­fic­ing prices or out­puts.

‘‘It gives us a very ef­fi­cient cat­a­lyst that gives us low back pres­sure. We get the emis­sions drop and main­tain the per­for­mance of the tur­bocharged ve­hi­cles,’’ he says.

‘‘The cat­a­lyst we have used is usu­ally used on things like Maser­atis, Fer­raris and Porsches. It’s the first time it’s been used on any­thing from Ford in Aus­tralia.’’

The per­for­mance arm of Ford Aus­tralia has in­creased the num­ber of FPV badges on its range of Fal­con-based mod­els, adding its logo to the steer­ing wheel, dash­board and key ring.

FPV spokesman Dave Hard­ing says the F6 side of the range will re­main more sub­tle than the new V8-pow­ered GT mod­els due later this year.

‘‘There’s a fair bit more we can do with the en­gi­neer­ing over the aes­thet­ics,’’ Hard­ing says. ‘‘It’s just an evo­lu­tion of the brand. We’re not head­ing into a more overt area. The F6 has al­ways been a wolf in sheep’s cloth­ing.

‘‘The GT is a dif­fer­ent ket­tle of fish. It’s al­ways been the bolder styling state­ment.’’

FPV gen­eral man­ager Rod Bar­rett says: ‘‘We are al­ways striv­ing to give our cars a unique per­son­al­ity and a pres­ence that we know ap­peals to our buy­ers. The com­pli­ance with Euro IV has given us the op­por­tu­nity to in­tro­duce these run­ning changes, with­out af­fect­ing the cost to our cus­tomers.

‘‘And this is just a fore­run­ner, of course. We also have a very ex­cit­ing new range of V8 mod­els com­ing later in the year,’’ he says.

The re­vamped FPV F6 range— in both sedan and util­ity — is on sale now with un­changed price tags.

The F6 is priced from $67,890 for both sixspeed man­ual and au­to­matic, the F6 E starts at $79,740 and the F6 Ute is $58,990 for man­ual and auto.

Sub­tle touches: the up­graded FPV F6 E has lower emis­sions and more badges (inset).

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