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The forgotten GT

It may not be forgotten by owners of this particular model GT, but many enthusiasts don’t know about Tickford Vehicle Engineering’s second attempt at Ford’s marquee nameplate during the 1990s.

The 30th anniversary Ford Falcon GT based on the EL was a radical attempt and was just as exclusive as the 1992 model, which relaunched the Blue Oval’s commitment to the V8.

Just 272 units including 11 for development were produced, dealers received a maximum of four GTs during the 239 production run, New Zealand received 20 and two were exported to South Africa.

The same man to design the AU Falcon range also styled the EL GT’s radical appearance featuring front bumper fog lamps, a vertically stacked grill akin to the Batmobile (the nickname given to it by the Australian motoring media), a rear wing and unique bonnet vents. Designed using a wind tunnel at Monash University alongside its V8 Supercar program for the EL, leading to its aggressive appearance.

A locally tweaked ‘Windsor’ 5.0-litre V8 was developed within the TVE workshop featured a heavily re-calibrated ECU, larger SVO GT40 cylinder heads and 42mm headers helped the unit produce 200kW and 470 Nm.

Tickford considered using other powerplants such as the 351ci ‘Windsor’ used in the EA GT development mule and a higher displacement version, but these were ruled out due to cost.

A five-speed manual or a unique four-speed automatic gearbox were available, the latter had a special adaptive mode using a computer to monitor the number of inputs selecting one of five different shift protocols to adapt to the driver’s own style.

A carbon-wrapped, aluminium tailshaft enabled the GT to reach 232km/h as proven by Wheels magazine in the July 1998 issue.

The interior featured leather, suede and wood in addition to a timber MOMO steering wheel plus a six-stacker CD player for those who know what those are.

The EL GT has not quite taken the collectors by storm yet, but is an important part of Ford’s performance history in Australia as it led to the TE-Series and Ford Performance Vehicles.