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Mike Stevens | Mar 31, 2010

FORD AUSTRALIA has today unveiled a new commemorative logo, celebrating 50 years of Falcon cars in Australia. Ford is also celebrating 85 years as a company in Australia, officially established on March 31, 1925.

The new badge, inspired by the original Falcon bird logo of the early 1960s, will feature on special edition Falcon models this year.

"We wanted to recognise the heritage in the original Falcon motifs of the early sixties, but it was also imperative that we created a new design that reflects the contemporary and dynamic vehicle that Falcon represents today and will tomorrow," Ford Australia Design Manager Todd Willing said.

Entering its 51st year on June 28 - 50 years after the first Australian-built XK Falcon rolled out of Ford's Broadmeadows assembly plant - Falcon is the longest-running nameplate in Australian motoring history.

"There is no doubt that Falcon has been a true icon of the Australian motoring scene since 1960," Ford Australia's Beth Donovan said today.

"Falcon has a history of being first to market with a wide variety of technology and safety advancements. We will continue that tradition in the next 12-18 months with the introduction of an all-new liquid phase injection LPG system and the world's first rear-wheel-drive EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine."

Although the Falcon has been around for 50 years, the first locally-produced Ford in Australia was the famous Model T, which began production in Australia on July 4, 1925.

Production of the first I6 engine at Ford's Geelong plant began on April 29, 1960, ahead of the XK Falcon's production schedule. The first XK went on sale in Australia on September 14, 1960.

Whether the Falcon will live to see another 50 years remains to be seen. As global Ford CEO Alan Mulally pushes the company's new 'One Ford' plan in the coming years, Ford Australia may be forced to wave goodbye to its treasured homegrown Falcon in favour of a new global model - possibly based on the new front- and all-wheel-drive Taurus.

Last week, Ford Australia confirmed that the Falcon Wagon had come to the end of the line, the last wagon scheduled to leave the factory in June. Ford will look to the imported Mondeo wagon and the larger Territory - itself in doubt beyond 2016 - to make up for the wagon's passing.

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