SO you need a toy. The guidelines aren’t too strict, but you’ve got $30K and plan a track day each quarter.
Whatever it is, it must make you grin. A Blue Oval on the front wouldn’t hurt, either. Keeping all this in mind, there’s plenty on offer – particularly in the world of pre-loved performance. Exhibit A: the BA Falcon-based FPV GT. The reborn legend.
Aussie Ford fans went absolutely berko when this car was launched. It was exciting stuff: the 5.4-litre BOSS290 V8, 290kW, 520Nm, and finally some decent styling. All enough to give the competition at the time – the VY HSV Clubsport R8 – a sound clobbering.
The Clubbie was known for being more progressive and communicative on the limit, but it was what happened beyond that envelope that mattered. Critics of the day lauded how easy the GT was to drift. Balance, stonk, and loads of steering lock were its weapons. And while it lacked a little mid-range, it could storm on to 254km/h, far beyond its 230km/h limiter.
Obviously you can’t buy a new Falcon GT anymore, but the good news is, Ford still knows how to make a car that’ll put a whopping big grin on your face. Like the Fiesta ST.
It trades the Falcon’s brawny displays of strength for finesse, agility, and feedback. In fact, it turned up to Performance Car of the Year 2013 and stole third place, beating HSV’s GTS, Jaguar’s V8 F-Type and even Mercedes-AMG’s A45 along the way. Then there’s the fact it’s our double Bang For Your Bucks (2014, 2015) value champ.
Yes, some of you might think it has half an engine – driving the wrong axle – and not enough doors, but pedal one fast and we dare you not to get out and want another go. It is one of today’s best value performance buys.
|SPECS||2004 FPV GT||FORD FIESTA ST|
|Engine||5408cc V8, DOHC, 32v||1596cc inline-4, DOHC, 16v, turbo|
|Power||290kW @ 5500rpm||134kW @ 5700rpm|
|Torque||520Nm @ 4500rpm||240Nm @ 5000rpm|
|0-100km/h||5.81sec (tested)||7.5sec (tested)|
Here's one we found on Trade Unique Cars
2004 FPV GT
75,000km, automatic, $28,500
OKAY, so it’s a four-speed auto (boo), but according to reviews at the time, the five-speed manual wasn’t much chop either. Consider the Fiesta ST as scoring points if you really must have a third pedal.