1 May 1967
Billed as the “Mustang-bred” Falcon, the handsome, long-nose, short-tailed XR GT was the first such model from an Australian manufacturer – and a mightily ambitious one.
Launched in April '67, the legendary gold-painted GT sedan boasted 149kW of power and 380Nm of torque from its imported (US) 4.7-litre OHV V8 engine.
Additionally, it had a taller differential, quicker steering, radial tyres, disc brakes, lowered suspension and go-faster stripes, as well as a luxury interior borrowed from the Fairmont.
It was an absolute sensation, upstaging Holden, which had recovered some lost sales with its popular HR revamp from April '66 but still could not offer a V8.
Years later a Ford boss of the time cited the XR as the “car that saved Ford” and “a turning point” for the Australian arm.