Last chance for an X-factor performer

Last chance for an X-factor performer

Megan and Grant Poll with their 2015 Ford Falcon XR8.

THERE is something special about the last of a breed, and so it was when Grant and Megan Poll of Tumut got their 2015 model Ford Falcon XR8.

Ford stopped making the Falcon last year, and this is virtually the last model XR8 to hit Australian roads.

“I always wanted an XR8, especially now they are not making them anymore,” Grant said.

“We saw a grey one at Hillis Ford in Wagga, and inquired about it. It was already sold but they said we could order another.”

They ordered the white machine in May of 2015 and it was delivered in November of that year.

“It was one of the last ones available to order,” Grant said.

“It’s a bit sad but that’s what’s happening now.”

Grant and Megan already had an XR6, and while they still had it, the new XR8 was something of a weekend toy. This meant it was available for something a car with a supercharged five-litre engine and six-speed manual gearbox is quite suited to – racing.

“I entered the Cooma Hill Climb a couple of times,” Grant said.

“I came third in the three-litres-and-over unmodified class.”

However, the XR6 has now been sold, so the XR8 is now daily transport, mainly for Megan, and its racing career is on hold. On hold, but not over.

“I’m keen to get it to Wakefield Park for track day,” Grant said.

A three-inch exhaust has been fitted to the XR8 and tuned by Auto Tech in Sydney.

“On its first run it was rated at 335 kilowatts and now it is just under 400,” Grant said.

“It’s great fun to drive.”

Fuel economy isn’t the horror story you might expect.

“It’s surprisingly good for a high-powered V8,” Grant said.

“We get about 100km less from a full tank than we got with the XR6.”

Not surprisingly, Grant and Megan’s kids love the car and Grant even let an appreciative close mate drive it. His fondness for muscular Fords is hereditary.

“My grandfather had an AU XR8.”