Ford Performance Vehicles releases it’s most potent GT to date, with an RSPEC upgrade to it’s FGII Series GT Falcon !
FPV rises from the depths of the current car sales mire, to create what it calls the `Most Advanced GT to date’ !
With the code name of `Panther’, this will be the first of a series of new models engineered to ignite (or revive), the Blue Oval performance car division and the Falcon brand.
Launched in Melbourne today (August 13), we eagerly await the first offering to the press from 27th August.
The Panther is a limited edition model based on the FGII GT platform and inspired by Ford’s USA limited edition `Black & Red’ Boss 302 2012 Mustang.
With the same 335Kw/575Nm supercharged 5.0Ltr V8 (‘Miami’ spec), as the current GT, the Panther will showcase refinements that have long been asked for by true driving enthusiasts. These include much wider 275 section rear tyres on a 9 inch wheel, to the current GT’s 245’s on an 8 inch alloy rim.
The suspension also received an upgrade with higher spring rates, re-tuned dampers, larger anti-roll bar, and reinforced rear lower control arms fitted to the rear-end. The
The end result of these two features means faster acceleration, better grip and much better steering and cornering than the current model GT.
Much like the first ever FPV concept revealed at last year’s Melbourne Motor Show – which unfortunately differed from the production-ready GT Black limited-edition released a month later – the Panther will feature this firmer ‘R-spec’ track-tuned suspension, wheels and a performance brake package, making it the `Most Focussed GT’ ever offered to the public.
Inspired by the Mustang, the Panther will have a fast appearance that doesn’t lose integrity on the road. An acceleration of 0-100k in 4.9 seconds will be well suited to the more aggressive front bumper design and all black paint scheme highlighted by red decals as per the Mustang BOSS 302.
FPV is expected to produce around 185 versions of the GT ‘Panther’ for public release. This is more than the production run for the GT Black which saw only 125 examples built – priced $3000 higher than the standard GT at $74,290 plus on-road costs.
According to motoring source Motoring.com.au, the good news doesn’t stop there for FPV fans, as we understand the Panther will be a precursor for yet another, much otter limited-edition, dubbed ‘Tempest’ that will be motivated by a more powerful 375kW intercooled version of FPV’s locally developed ‘Miami’-spec supercharged 5.0-litre Boss V8. The Tempest is also expected to ride on firmer R-spec suspension with the same 275-section rear tyres, likely to earn it the title of the quickest production FPV ever. We’ll have to wait until the Australian International Motorshow in Sydney in October to see one in the flesh though, side by side with an example of the 85 FPV Super Pursuit ute’s expected to be included in the same series run.
Of course, these power escalations to FPV’s blown Miami V8 series again raise hopes for a re-born GTHO branded Falcon, which has been the market’s expectation since last year’s Bathurst 1000 – exactly 40 years after Allan Moffat’s famous 1971 Bathurst win in the Falcon GTHO.
FPV and British-based Prodrive, who owns a controlling 51 per cent stake in the FPV joint venture, make no attempt to hide any enthusiasm at the thought of a GTHO, but all sources remain quiet on that front.
General Manager Bryan Mears remains positive about the effect of the new series; “The good news is that FPV is set for stronger sales this year than last, and we have some very exciting new product to talk about later in the year,” he said.
“FPV is currently working on new product due for release sometime within the next 12 months,” he said. “A version of the supercharged Miami engine sits at its heart and whilst we are excited by the opportunities, we cannot say any more at this moment.”
Excited is an understatement, as FPV – and fans of genuine Australian super cars – observe the evolution of the FG GT via a series of carefully planned limited edition upgrades.
Long live the Falcon !
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Country of origin: Australia
Front, longitudinally mounted
All aluminium, DOHC, 32 valves
5.0 litre / 302.1 cu in
Power 335 Kw / 450 Hp @ 5750 rpm, torque 570 nm / 420 ft lbs
Tremec TR6060 6 speed manual
Rear wheel drive
Top Speed 260 km/h (162 mph)
0-100 km/h 4.9 s