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All New FG Falcon-President Bill Osborne Speech

February 17th, 2008



 

[V.O. Intro: Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the President of Ford Australia, Mr Bill Osborne] 5 mins 20 secs

Mr Osborne:
Good morning ladies and gentlemen and thank you for joining us today.

Although I have only recently arrived to head up the team here at Ford Australia, it didn't take me long to pick up on the palpable excitement, surrounding this moment.

Already most of you have experienced the intrigue of the spy photos, the
blacked-out buses, the confidentiality, the secrecy and the fuss, and I’m sure, like the rest of Australia, you’re all dying to cast your eyes on the new Ford Falcon.

And you will get that opportunity in just a few moments.

(PAUSE)

However, today is not just about finally seeing the new Falcon.

Today is about moving forward - about Ford meeting a changing market with a broad range of exciting and relevant cars.

Today is the next step in the transition of this great company.

To do that we must continue changing the Ford brand - from traditional and muscular - to fresh, exciting and right for modern Australia.

You can map this transition back to June 2004, with the launch of the ‘Amazing’ Ford Territory.

Territory re-defined the SUV segment and it re-defined Ford.

We continued this change when we introduced new vehicles such as Fiesta and Focus.

We followed those launches with exciting sports derivatives of both vehicles and the addition of the new Ranger, closely followed late last year by the return of the Mondeo.

We now offer a complete range of vehicles that includes Fiesta, Focus, Mondeo, Territory, Escape, Ranger, Falcon, Falcon Ute, and Transit.

We now truly offer a vehicle to suit the needs of every modern customer.

From 2011 we will manufacture more of them right here in Australia when we add production of the globally successful Focus to our line-up of locally produced vehicles.

And our plan keeps rolling with the exciting 2008 Ford showroom.

Which brings us to the all-new FG Falcon and Falcon Ute…

(PAUSE)

Falcon is a name that conjures feelings of pride and tradition - yet it is also a name synonymous with the introduction of trail blazing technology and safety features.

Today we showcase a range of vehicles that proves that the Falcon name can stand for both the past and the present - a range of vehicles that can meet the needs of modern consumers.

(PAUSE)

So what DO modern consumers want?

They've told us again and again that they want everything - they don't want to compromise.

They want more performance AND improved fuel economy.

They want more safety features - both passive and active.

They want more user-friendly technology.

And they want it all packaged in a vehicle that visually represents both them and what their car can deliver.

(PAUSE)

So, how does the all-new Falcon deliver on all of these wants?
It has fuel economy figures starting at only 10.1 litres per 100 kilometres.

In fact, improvements in fuel economy of up to 11.4 per cent - dependent on model - have been engineered since the launch of the BA Falcon in 2002.

Now, that's a staggering improvement, particularly when you consider that they have been possible while also adding new safety features and innovative technology.

(PAUSE)

Even with its impressive fuel economy, the all-new Falcon doesn't shy away from its proud performance heritage.

Performance has long been a hallmark of the Falcon brand in Australia and, with power figures starting at 195 kilowatts and building to 270 kilowatts for the iconic Turbo engine - and up to 290 kilowatts for the Boss 290 V8 engine - the new Falcon continues to stake its claim as a dynamic and exciting vehicle to drive.

The perfect combination of power, torque and drivability extends to every engine in the new Falcon range - allowing customers to thoroughly enjoy their drive experience while still taking advantage of the fuel economy improvements made across each model.

(PAUSE)

Most importantly however, the all-new Falcon offers fuel economy improvements AND increased performance - AS WELL as introducing new passive and active safety features across the range.

Dynamic stability control will remain standard on every petrol Falcon sedan and join the standard feature list on Falcon wagon.

Side airbags will be standard in every Falcon sedan.

Driver and front passenger beltminders will be standard in every Falcon sedan.

Curtain airbags will be standard on high series vehicles and available on every model.

A reverse camera will also be standard on high series models and available for every customer if they so choose.

Reverse sensing systems will also be available, along with traction control, ABS, emergency brake assist and emergency brake force distribution.

These safety features will combine with an advanced body structure that will place the new FG Falcon at the absolute forefront of Australian passenger vehicle safety.

(PAUSE)

Our long list of innovative features extends beyond fuel economy, performance and safety to include the introduction of an exciting new human machine interface system that will provide the driver with information at their fingertips.

The Falcon HMI system will provide easy access to necessary and relevant information and allow the driver to control the environment of the vehicle while still concentrating on driving.

(PAUSE)

With all these features, the new Falcon is set to blow off the cobwebs and re-assert its place in family life.

It has the right blend of luxury, road presence, refinement, cleverness, safety and innovation.

(PAUSE)

Now, let me tell you some more about our exciting new line-up which you'll be seeing today, which is designed to match a Falcon model to every potential Falcon customer.

In the past, the choice of models ran along one straight line - from XT through to Futura, Fairmont, Fairmont Ghia and the XR range.

In the past, Falcon had only two faces: the sporty XR and the primary XT to Fairmont Ghia look.

Today we're changing all that.

Today we are launching three distinct Falcon sedan families - each with their own unique face.

We have a new entry level model.

We have an all-new range of luxury sports models.

We have our iconic range of performance sports models.

Of course, we haven't forgotten our acclaimed Falcon Ute range, which you'll also see today.

And, the icing on the cake... we have our exciting Ford Performance Vehicles sitting at the top of our luxury sports and performance sports line-ups.

(PAUSE)

In summary, the new Falcon offers:

An exciting new series line-up

All-new exterior and interior designs

Improved fuel economy

Enhanced performance

A range of innovative new technologies, and

It also sets a new benchmark in safety

(PAUSE)

Finish
Ladies and gentlemen, the all new FG Falcon is set to become Australia’s favourite family getaway car.

(Rich and soft)

So, please, walk with us as we show you the new Ford family.

(Bill steps back, lights change, music starts and focus moves towards the lifestyle sequence…)

[Bill Osborne returns to the front of the stage] 9 min 20 secs

Mr Osborne:
Ladies and gentlemen, I'm very pleased to present to you the all-new FG Falcon, Falcon Ute and Ford Performance Vehicles range!

[APPLAUSE]

This is the first time in recent history that we have showcased our sedan, Ute and hero performance models at the same time.

While we can't fit every single model into this enclosed space, these vehicles represent the best and the brightest of our exciting all-new range.

As you can see, these vehicles do live up to the hype.

The all-new design visually delivers on the promise of what a Falcon is - a dynamic vehicle that's perfect for Australian families.

(PAUSE)

Now, to give you more detail on each model…

For the first time ever, the Falcon XT will have its own unique look - distinctly different from the rest of the range.

With a 195 kilowatt engine and a 5-speed automatic transmission as standard, it will stand alone as a value proposition created to maximise sales with major fleet buyers and private customers. It's feature packed, with a focus on safety.

As I outlined earlier, the Falcon XT will come complete with driver and front passenger airbags and side airbags as standard - along with dynamic stability control and an optional curtain airbag.

[PAUSE]

And now it gets even more exciting.

Our repositioning of the Falcon range sees us say goodbye to the traditional Futura, Fairmont and Fairmont Ghia names.

Now, those names have heritage and have meant something to Australian consumers.

(PAUSE)

However, now is the time to take the Falcon brand to an all-new level and introduce an exciting line-up of luxury sports models.

Introducing the Ford
G Series range.

As you will see when you come up for a closer look in a few moments, the G Series has its own special look - that sets it apart from the XT AND the XR range.

[PAUSE]

They say the future isn't what it used to be, and neither is the Futura, because the modern ‘lifestyle’ consumer is demanding higher levels of luxury.

The old Futura level has been done away with entirely.

So, after our Falcon XT we have…

The first of the G Series.

The G6 instantly proclaims its unique G Series identity with an arresting front grille.

Equal in specification level to the previous generation Fairmont, the G6 builds on the standard XT features and has everything consumers expect regarding safety, driveability and performance…

This includes a reverse sensing system, which is standard across the G Series range.

Next, we have the G6E -
‘E’ standing for European styling cues - with a level of luxury exceeding that of the old Fairmont Ghia.

The G6E features everything modern Australian consumers have come to expect in performance luxury, including the renowned ZF 6-speed automatic transmission, a standard leather interior and Bluetooth connectivity.

On the safety front - curtain and side thorax airbags, along with a reverse camera - an Australian automotive first on our award-winning Territory - will be standard on the G6E and available across the entire G Series range.

And now to the very exciting hero of the G Series…

Introducing the G6E Turbo

The only turbo available in an Australian luxury sports sedan - with a 270 kilowatt engine delivering an amazing 533 Nm of torque.

Similarly spec’d to the G6E, the G6E Turbo will offer customers the perfect combination of performance and luxury in an Australian sedan.

Moving on to our iconic XR range…

Which, as you can see from the XR8 and XR6 Turbo here today, also features its own unique look to set it aside from both the XT and the G Series.

Although we don't have one here to show you today, the XR6 is packed with the expected sporty visual cues, sports suspension and safety features - and it also offers the option of the reverse camera.

The always exciting XR6 Turbo builds on the platform with a turbo-charged 270 kilowatt engine, the choice of either a 6-speed manual transmission or the ZF 6-speed automatic, a limited slip diff and 18” alloys wheels.

While the XR8 will feature the renowned Boss 290 engine for the first time.

Also for the first time, the XR6 Turbo and the XR8 will be positioned equally in terms of features and specifications - with the only difference being the choice of engine and the XR8's signature bonnet power bulge.

So, the two lines of our new positioning strategy start at the XT and branch out to either luxury sports or performance sports - G Series or XR.

But the new news doesn't stop there.

Our new FG Falcon range also includes a full model line-up of Utes, which are represented here today by the Falcon R6 Ute and the XR8 Ute.

Our continuing, successful strategy with Falcon Ute powers on.

We will still provide a true car-like workhorse AND a sports recreational vehicle.

For ‘workhorse’ we mean “unbelievable” toughness, comfort and drivability.

And for ‘recreational’ we mean the exciting and powerful car-like sports-styling that makes Ute “unbelievably hot”.

To further strengthen our appeal we have also refined the Falcon Ute line up.

Research has shown that the base model Falcon XL Ute, is often referred to as the Falcon Ute - rather than an XL.

So now, officially, the base model will be known simply as 'Falcon Ute'

The Falcon Ute will be available in both cab chassis and styleside box with one-tonne suspension. We will continue to be the only manufacturer in Australia offering the flexibility of cab chassis configurations.

The Falcon safety story continues in the Falcon Ute with driver and passenger airbags - and ABS - as standard, with a further option of side airbags.

To top it off Falcon Ute has a 195 kilowatt 4 litre engine to deliver necessary grunt and pulling power.

As with Falcon sedan, the Ute will also continue to be available with an e-gas alternative - which again sets us apart in the market place.

We have also spotted a niche between pure workhorse and pure performance.

So we are further
re-vitalising the Falcon Ute line-up with the introduction of the Falcon R6 Ute.

With alloys, sports steering wheel and sports bucket seats, the R6 replaces XLS and plays to all the ‘why buys’ of Ute customers.

(pause)

The XR6 Ute "powers up" the sports credentials and adds traction control as standard.

The XR6 Turbo Ute takes performance to a new level with the iconic turbo charged engine.

Again XR6 Turbo & XR8 Ute stand together as equal heroes of the range…the only difference being the 290kw V8 engine and the hallmark bonnet power bulge.

[PAUSE]

Which brings me to the extremely exciting Ford Performance Vehicles range.

FPV is also undergoing an exciting transformation.

For the first time, FPV badges will take centre stage and prominence.

This major repositioning is representative of the brand's status as one of Australia's leading performance vehicle companies and its continued development as our performance partner.

FPV will still stand for FORD Performance Vehicles.

(PAUSE)

There will be seven stunning vehicles with exhilarating power upgrades across the realigned FPV range.

We aren't going to reveal the power numbers for you today - after all, we have to keep something up our sleeve - however I guarantee you will be impressed.

The new line-up will offer performance enthusiasts the ultimate in performance engineering, luxury appointments and sports styling - as well as adding dynamic stability control as standard across all sedans and Utes.

Customers will also enjoy a choice of either the world-class ZF 6-speed automatic transmission or a new
6-speed manual transmission - with no price difference between the two.

(pause)

As with our G Series range, FPV models will now carry simpler names that are instantly recognizable for modern Australian consumers.

Never fear though - the iconic GT and GT-P names will continue.

The GT series will continue our strong GT heritage while the new F6 family caters to those performance enthusiasts who prefer a slick turbo charged 6 to a thundering V8.

(Pause)

The GT series also introduces the sizzling GT-E which will come standard with six-piston Brembo brakes.

While we don't have one to show you today, visually, the new GT-E is distinguished from its V8 siblings by its refined rear lip spoiler, chrome accents and distinctive GT-E badge.

But we do have an Australian Hero here today - the FPV GT.

Naturally it features all the bold, muscular styling you've come to expect.

And you can see the Super Pursuit Ute also sports a new look.

(pause)

Needless to say, the full FPV range has been engineered and designed to provide the performance enthusiast with the ultimate in Australian performance motoring.

[PAUSE]

I know that you're all probably keen to get a closer look at these new vehicles and discover for yourselves how this dynamic range is going to reinvigorate the Falcon brand in Australia.

Before you do that however, I'd like to leave you with some key points to remember about the all-new Falcon.

We're introducing the exciting new G Series range…

For the first time, the Falcon sedans have three distinct looks.

We have improved fuel economy - while also enhancing performance.

The new Falcon will be at the forefront of Australian passenger vehicle safety with a full complement of passive and active safety enhancements.

We have an exciting new Ute range that has a vehicle to suit both the workhorse and recreational Ute buyer.

And we are launching our exciting new FPV range at the same time.

(Pause)

And there you have it!

A dynamic range of ‘fun’ Falcons matched to every Falcon lifestyle - set to blow away the cobwebs and re-assert their place in Australian life.

Cars that say: Family, Adventure, Driveability.

Cars that joyfully exclaim - Ford is for living.

Falcon is for living.

Thank you very much for your time this morning.

Key Ford and FPV personnel are here to answer your questions.

Please come forward and inspect these fantastic vehicles for yourselves.

(Bill steps back from the front of the stage, low music starts, Ford and FPV employees move forward to each car)


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