1997 Ford Falcon Futura 4.0 inline six (petrol) from Australia and New Zealand


Great value for money


Blown head gasket (most common mechanical problem with this Ford generation).

Some issues with the temperature sensor causing the car to rev too high at idle.

Gearbox faded, but responded very well to a transmission service. Clutch never slipped, but diff did thump on up and down shifts.

General Comments:

Overall, an excellent vehicle if you are prepared to maintain usual things such as brakes, tyres, maybe an aircon regas (although mine worked perfectly).

This car for what it gives you is probably the best value for money for a cheap used car in Australia right now. My EL Falcon Futura had factory fitted aircon and cruise control and an aftermarket CD player, and overall, it was a very solid driving package with plenty of power.

However, be aware that head gaskets are known to go on these engines, especially at high mileage, and sure enough, mine went with the odometer at 282800. My gearbox was faded, but responded very well to a transmission service (they don't always respond well, ALWAYS get your mechanic's opinion first) and whilst the diff thumped a bit, the clutch never slipped.

Overall, this car is cheap to service, and its only everyday achilles heel is petrol consumption, which is fairly high.

If you can find an EL with gas installed and motor/box running well, you are on to a very good thing.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th December, 2010

1997 Ford Falcon Futura 4.0L MP EFI from Australia and New Zealand


It serves a purpose..


Coolant overflow bottle disintegrated.

General Comments:

The Good:

- Pulls like a steam train.

- Plenty of room being a wagon.

- Good economy for its size on the highway at cruising speed.

The Bad:

- Poor economy around town.

- Horrible plastic steering wheel.

- Uncomfortable seats.

- Poor handling compared to the Pug Mi16 (more like floating a boat).

If it wasn't for the fact that I needed to regularly pull a horse float, I'd still have the Mi16.. fun little car.. go-kart flat handling with comfy seats..

Why did I choose the Ford?

Strong torquey engine with the lugging power to do the allotted task, unlike the 'high' revving, no grunt Holden V6 (quite apart from the standard Holden habit of continuously falling apart all the time).

And still sort of adequate for day to day use. The exact reasons I would not find any Seriously Ugly Vehicle acceptable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 9th June, 2010

1997 Ford Falcon EL 4.0 OHC from Australia and New Zealand


Loves the mechanics


Security locking system stuffed up the first day we got it.

Had tapping sounds coming from the engine.

Radiator system was faulty at about 187,000ks.

Distributor died at 175,000ks.

Coil pack died at 170,000ks.

Brake light fuse died at 160,000ks and at 210,000ks.

Transmission light comes and goes.

Windows kept on needing re-aligning for smoother roll downs.

Transmission was very clunky.

Before we sold it, it wouldn't always start, it took 3 or 4 times to get it running.

General Comments:

The car was very quick for those days, 157kw rear wheel drive . Would put VX Commodores to shame at the lights. It was faulty, one spent a lot of time in the mechanics. We spent over $6000 on repairs over 6 years of ownership.

The car was also very comfortable with plenty of leg room. I wouldn't say all the EL's are faulty, but I don't recommend one. They average around 12.5l per 100km in the city, well my one did :( So they're not good on fuel, but for the power I wasn't really complaining.

If you really want an EL, I recommend that you see the service history and get one with not too many Ks. I learnt that these cars are high maintenance.

The positive for the faultiness is that it's cheap to fix.

It was also running on unleaded fuel, only not dual fuel, so that wasnt the reason why it was faulty.

I'd recommend a 1996 Toyota Camry V6 over an EL.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 17th November, 2009