Ford Falcon EcoBoost used car review

RACV RoyalAuto magazine

Ford’s ground-breaking four-cylinder EcoBoost Falcon, launched in 2012, has been one of Australia’s best-kept secrets. Anyone after a second-hand large, comfortable family sedan should give it serious consideration.

The 2.0-litre turbo-charged EcoBoost engine, coupled with a well-matched six-speed automatic, can be found in the standard-grade Falcon, G6 and G6E sedans.    

By challenging the tradition of the six-cylinder Australian sedan, the EcoBoost was a difficult concept to grasp, especially as it was launched at a time when many family car buyers had begun moving across to SUVs. Sales weren’t massive, so like any hidden gem you’ll need to fossick around on the used market to find the car you want.  

Performance

The EcoBoost Falcon has a lot going for it. The sophisticated 2.0-litre engine performs like a six-cylinder but with the fuel economy of a four.

It puts out 175kW and 353Nm, better than six-cylinder engines of just a few years ago, and accelerates as quickly as its equivalent six-cylinder sibling. The performance always feels strong and responsive around town, and it eats up country kilometres with ease. 

The lighter engine means less weight over the front wheels, resulting in better steering feel and well-balanced handling. It also has a comfortable, compliant ride. 

Limited tow capacity

The one area where the EcoBoost can’t match the six-cylinder models is towing ability. It’s limited to 1600 kilograms while the six-cylinder versions can pull up to 2300 kilograms.

EcoBoost continues Falcon’s roomy general comfort, with model grades and equipment levels similar to its six-cylinder siblings. But it also has those awkward Falcon traits owners have learned to live with over the years, such as the restrictive door openings and the odd-shaped boot.


Comfortable interior

Its front seats are big and comfortable, although the driving position in terms of the seat-to-steering wheel relationship won’t suit everyone. Likewise, while the outer rear seats are comfortable, the large transmission tunnel limits leg room for the person in the centre. 

A mid-life upgrade to the FG X at the end of 2014 smartened up the appearance inside and out, as well as adding equipment.  

We are not aware of any inherent major problems with the EcoBoost engine. Most of the things we hear about are general issues found across the Falcon range.

When test driving, make sure the transmission operation is smooth and quiet, especially in high-kilometre examples. Overhauling the six-speed automatic can be expensive. Also listen for clunking in the driveline, which could be split differential bushes on cars that overall have been worked hard. 

Check for signs of accident damage and poor-quality repairs. Some of the hard plastic trims tend to scratch easily or fall off.


FORD FALCON ECOBOOST

Price range
XT
(2012-14) $11,200-$13,900
FG X (2014-16) $17,200-$22,400
G6 (2012-14) $13,200-$16,500
G6E (2012-16) $15,100-$24,700
Approximate Glass’s Guide prices for a four-door sedan. 

Fuel consumption: In normal use, you can expect 8.0-10.5L/100km. 
Safety: EcoBoost has a five-star ANCAP rating but Ford didn’t invest in technology such as autonomous braking, blind-spot alerts or lane-departure warning for this car, as Falcon was being phased out.
Towing: 1600kg (braked trailer). 
The competition: Holden Commodore, Toyota Camry/Aurion, Skoda Superb. 


RACV can help

Need a great competitive car loan with no ongoing fees (meaning you pay less each month)? 

RACV makes it easy to apply for a car loan and there is a fast five-hour approval process. Go to racv.com.au/finance.

Written by Greg Hill
March 26, 2018

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