Lot 236: Ford Falcon Futura Sprint Coupe
Ford USA's foray into rallying in the early 1960s was part of its 'Total Performance' marketing strategy that would see it win Le Mans and the Indianapolis 500, the latter courtesy of Lotus, as well as bankroll the most successful Formula 1 engine of all time: the Ford-Cosworth DFV. Perhaps surprisingly, its chosen rally weapon was the Falcon Futura coupe which, although a compact car by North American standards, was huge compared to its European competitors. Confounding the pundits, who considered the car too unwieldy for European special stages, Bo Ljungfeldt and his Ford Falcon had an honourable 1963 Monte Carlo Rally finishing 42nd overall with 307 entrants. For the 1964 edition -with the car presented here today- he stunned the competition by winning every single special stage of the Rally. This is the only time this sensational performance was achieved, he would then win his class but unfortunately an unfavourable handicapping system that favoured smaller cars, would have him settle for second overall behind a Mini Cooper. He is still the only driver to have won all the Monte Carlo stages in a single event. In October 2004 the ex-Ljungfeldt Falcon made its competition comeback in the famous Carrera Panamericana road race in Mexico driven by the Swedish team of Mats Lindén and Ralf Christensson. A former Swedish circuit racing champion, Lindén had restored the Falcon in 2003 and prepared the car to race standards before sending it across the Atlantic. The gruelling eight-day marathon was not problem free; first the ignition timing needed readjustment to cope with the high altitude while the air flow had to be improved to aid cooling. Then the Falcon lost fourth gear and the clutch burnt out, and all before the first stage had finished. It took the crew two days to fix the car, working day and night. On the fourth day the Falcon began to show its potential, starting seventh in class and improving to second place after five days. The car finished the gruelling 3,000-kilometre event at the legendary 'La Bufa' stages third in class despite this being its driver's first attempt at the race. 'The car went like a dream,' Lindén said afterwards. 'I have driven many race cars but this one is definitely one of the best. It is rock steady on the road with lots of power since it only weighs 1,000kg.' Very conscious of saving weight wherever possible, the car was fitted with polyester doors, bonnet, boot lid and front wings even retaining its aluminium bumpers to this day. We are advised that the Falcon is offered for sale in generally very good condition, benefiting from a recent service and ready to race. Noteworthy features include a 4.7-litre engine (as fitted from 1964 onwards), Borg-Warner four-speed manual gearbox, 6.50/6.70 x 15" tyres and an overall weight without fuel of 980kg (2,156lb). The tyres and battery are new. Offered with Swedish registration papers and technical inspection, some mechanical and bodywork spares, the ex-Ljungfeldt Falcon represents a rare opportunity to acquire an historic ex-works rally car with in-period Monte Carlo history, driven by one of the foremost stars of the day.
The Monaco Sale|
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