5 October 2016

Falcon Legacy Lives On; Final Vehicles to Fund STEAM Student Robotics Programs in Broadmeadows and

Ford is auctioning the final saleable Falcon, Territory and Falcon Ute – some of the most valuable versions of the iconic vehicles that have defined Australian roads for decades – to support the next generation of local innovators who will help define the country’s future.

Ford engineers will work with a school in Broadmeadows and Geelong to either expand or create hubs for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths (STEAM, formerly STEM) programs. These engineers also will continue to mentor and sponsor teams of kids competing around the world in STEAM robotics competitions.

“We have spent more than three years helping our manufacturing employees find new futures in Broadmeadows and Geelong,” said Graeme Whickman, President and CEO, Ford of Australia. “As the leading local automotive R&D investor and employer going forward, we also want to support the country’s quest to spur more innovation and tap into our unique talent base.”

The auction will help Ford carry on the legacies of its manufacturing team and Falcon as the company builds on the largest automotive R&D presence in Australia. Ford will soon become Australia’s leading automotive employer with more than 2,000 team members, including 1,100 designers and engineers.

The company invests more locally in R&D than any other automaker, including $300 million this year alone. Ford has cultivated this vast product development operation through billions of dollars of investment through the decades tracing back to Falcon’s early development in the 1960s.

Robo kids

Ford tests new vehicles at some of the world’s most advanced development and testing sites across Victoria. Ford is packing each new vehicle full of camera, radar and other sensing technologies designed to help alert customers to potential hazards and even help them with steering torque or brake in some situations such as where the system detects that the driver is drifting into another lane or where a collision is imminent.

Similarly, Ford-sponsored STEAM robotics teams program robots through sensing technologies to complete certain tasks in competitions.

“Our Australian team lead the global development of the Ranger and Everest at our innovative virtual reality design lab in Broadmeadows, 950-hectacre test track with one of the world’s most advanced wind tunnels outside Geelong and through some of the world’s toughest terrain across the country,” said Whickman. “While the scales are different, STEAM kids have to program robots to take on tough challenges in a similar way.”

Ford engineers also mentor teams of ambitious kids who develop and program robots to take on tough competition from around the world. Ford will significantly grow support of STEAM education via these fundraising auctions.

Final Ford vehicle auction

The auction of the final saleable vehicles will be managed by Manheim on behalf of Ford Australia. Auction registrations will be available online from Oct 5. The auction will run online and live on Oct 15.

The specific vehicles available for auction:

  • Kinetic “Ford blue” Falcon XR6 sedan with the company’s most Australian engine
  • Silver Territory Titanium diesel
  • Smoke grey Falcon Ute XR6 Turbo (pre-registered)

To learn more about the final Ford vehicle auction, visit: www.fordfinal4.com.au

Ford will keep the final Falcon, Falcon Ute and Territory, all of which will be fitted with a compliance plate without the Government authority number which will render them un- registrable. The vehicles will initially be displayed at key enthusiast events before loaning them to museums in Victoria longer term. A “Falcon Living Legacy” backdrop will accompany the vehicles to reinforce the importance of their innovative spirit going forward through Ford’s unique Australian investment.

Giving more in Geelong

Ford also will donate the auction proceeds (minus taxes) from Falcon XR6 Sprint No. 500 of 500 to its longest-standing charity partner, ‘Give Where You Live’ in Geelong.

This year, Ford celebrated the 50th anniversary the charity’s Loaned Executive Program in which Ford leaders inspire local community members. Ford also is doubling contributions to Give Where You Live this year through corporate funding. Ford will continue to be a major employer in Geelong through the Research and Development Centre and at the You Yangs Proving Ground.

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