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Ford Fairmont

The Ford Fairmont is a full-size car which was built by Ford Australia as a more upmarket version of the Ford Falcon from 1965 to 2008. It was available as a 4-door sedan throughout its life, as a five-door station wagon from its introduction through to 2002 and as a two-door hardtop from 1972 to 1978.

History

The Fairmont was added to Ford's Australian lineup in September 1965 as part of the Falcon XP range. It was offered in both sedan and station wagon body-styles replacing the short-lived XP series Falcon Futura sedan and Falcon Squire wagon models which had been released only months before. A 200 ci (3.3-litre) six-cylinder engine, optional on the XP Falcon, was standard on the Fairmont. The model has been through many incarnations since then, each one aligned with the contemporary Falcon series but usually with better computer, locking, interior options and extra fog lamps/exterior plastics.

1966 saw the release of a new XR series Fairmont with the addition of a V8 engine option. The XA series of 1972 marked the debut of a 2-door Hardtop body style. An additional top-of-the-line Fairmont GXL sedan was offered from 1976 in the XC series. The replacement of the XC by the XD in 1978 marked the end of the 2-door Hardtop and also saw the GXL replaced by the Fairmont Ghia. The Ghia was, unlike the base Fairmont, offered in sedan body-style only. A Ghia wagon was offered from 1986 but discontinued in 1993 with the release of the ED Series and the Fairmont wagon was discontinued in 2002 when the AU series gave way to the BA.

Production ended with the arrival of the FG Series Falcon range in 2008, when the Fairmont and Fairmont Ghia were replaced by the Ford G6, G6E and G6E Turbo models. According to the then Ford Australia head Tom Gorman, the model code FG was chosen as a 'nod to the Fairmont Ghia.'

Between 1970 and 1978, Australian Ford Fairmont sedans and wagons were exported to the United Kingdom. While incredibly large when compared to models in Ford's European range, they had a solid reputation for their reliability.

South Africa

In South Africa the Ford Fairmont was assembled in Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape from 1969 to 1971 in the Ford Falcon XW and XY shape. Two models were available: a 250 six-cylinder and 351C V8. The Ranchero was the pick-up version.

The South African Fairmonts also came in GT form. These cars were the same as the Australian Falcon GT, but with some cosmetic differences, the main ones being that the side stripes have the Supa-Roo replaced by a Supa-Rhino and the gauges are all in Metric format. The Fairmont GT's are now coming back to Australia as they are highly desirable.

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