EVEN dedicated Aussie car enthusiasts might struggle to recall the short-lived FPV Force 6 and Force 8 models. Introduced as part of the BF II Falcon range in October 2006, the models marked the diversification of Ford Performance Vehicles into the sports-luxury market, finally providing a rival to the HSV Senator while the racier Typhoon and GT continued to battle the Clubsport and GTS.
It was far from a sales success, just 99 Force 6s were built and 95 8s, however, it introduced a philosophy of subtlety that would continue through the FG F6 E and GT E to the final fast Falcons, the XR6 and XR8 Sprint.
The Force twins went without the V8 Supercar-style spoilers, fluoro colours and lairy stripes of their sportier siblings, instead preferring a subtle bodykit with lashings of chrome highlights and shadow chrome 19-inch wheels. The available colour palette reflected its intended sleeper status, with red and white the only extroverts among a choice of black, silver, dark green, blue and dark grey.
Inside, woodgrain inserts on the dash and doors added a touch of class, while the equipment list boasted eight-way adjustable electric seats, a 150-watt, six-speaker stereo with six-disc in-dash CD player (remember them?), dual-zone climate control, electronically adjustable pedals and a performance steering wheel.
Mechanically, the Force models mirrored the Typhoon and GT, the Force 6 using a 270kW/550Nm 4.0-litre turbo six and the Force 8 a 290kW/520Nm 5.4-litre V8, both teamed exclusively with the ZF six-speed auto. Sports suspension and Brembo brakes were also standard, though the bigger stoppers from the GT-P were optional.
Unfortunately, not even Jedi mind tricks were enough to convince the intended corporate executive clientele the Force models were good value, with the equivalent Typhoon and GT models retailing for almost $10K less.
3984cc 6cyl, DOHC, 24v, turbo/5408cc V8, DOHC, 32v
270kW @5000rpm/290kW @5500rpm
550Nm @2400rpm/520Nm @4500rpm
THREE FORCE FACTS
1 Less is more
In every sense bar soundtrack, the Force 6 was the pick, by being significantly quicker than its bent-eight brother while also handling better thanks to its lighter engine and kerb weight. That said, the Boss V8 did sound sweet.
2 Drab decor
Dollops of leather, chrome and wood weren’t enough to add a luxury sheen to the Falcon interior, a 2007 comparo citing old-school plastics and too-high seats among the issues. “New grout over old tiles”, tester Nathan Ponchard said.
3 Hoon at heart
Force 8 struggled to make an impression against more expensive opposition, but still impressed with its engine note, chassis balance, great auto and ability to rip a wicked skid (above). Now, it’s a rare and comfortable sought-after modern classic.