Cohort Classic: 1971 Ford Falcon (XY) 351 GT – The Australian Four-Door Mustang Boss 351

(first posted 1/15/2012)    Our prolific and eagle-eyed New Zealand-based Cohort Contributor Bryce has posted this sighting of a rather rare and legendary machine indeed, the 1971 Falcon 351 GT, Ford of Australia’s echo to US muscle cars. Given that all of 1776 (1557 Phase 1; 300 GTHO) of these cars were ever made it’s probably better to compare it to the legendary (and rare) Boss 429 Mustang. In the US, such rare muscle cars have all-too often been cloned; could this one have been? (Update: Yes!)

As is all-too obvious, the Ozzie Falcons from 1966-1971 (XR, XT, XW, XY) were heavily based on the US gen2 Falcon, which arrived in 1966. That coincided exactly with the beginning of the golden muscle car era, but since the Aussie Falcon did not come in a two door version, the four door became the basis of the go-fast attentions.

The XR and XT GT’s came with small-block 289 and 302 V8s, but the racing homologation-special GT-HO XW stepped up to an available Windsor 351, soon replaced by the more potent Cleveland 351, rated at 300 (gross) hp.

That brings us to the ultimate Falcon GT of this generation, the XY. The “shaker” hood scoop was exported, along with a Phase III tune for the 351 that generated some 350-390 hp. The Phase III Falcons were the fastest four door sedans down under (at 141 mph), and among the fastest sedans in the world at the time. Bryce added the note that this particular one’s engine has been increased to 393 cubic inches.