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the beast

I've always had blue blood running through my veins - blame it on Dad. He's owned a few Fords including a XB GT, a XC Panel van and a XD Fairmont Ghia, all from new with his only second-hand car being a P5 LTD.

Although Dad had restored his LTD when I was still in primary school, I remember it fondly. I wanted it to be my first car. Unfortunately he sold it soon after competing the restoration.

When I started looking around for my first car, at the tender age of 15, I was mainly looking at two different cars - GT's and XE ESP's. With the ESP (in 4.9 litre, 4-speed manual mode) being the most practical and they were only 10-12 years old.

Dad though wouldn't have anything of it. He thought second-hand cars were nothing but "second-hand trouble" so by the time I was 16 he had convinced me to put all my life savings into a brand new car.

That car although wasn't originally going to be this EF Fairmont Ghia, as you see here. We originally ordered a ED Fairmont Ghia in Cobalt Blue and minus the body-kit. But Ford soon seized production for the new model, so we waited a few more months and ordered a car pretty much sight-unseen. Although there were "spy photos" in the magazines, no-one really knew what a Fairmont Ghia with a body styling kit would look like.

We were also forced to change the colour, as the high-spec models weren't being offered in Cobalt Blue, so Cardinal Red was chosen - another EB GT colour. Other options included a full leather interior, 6-stack CD player, sunroof, LSD, 16-inch alloy wheels, sports suspension and of course the 165kW 5-litre V8 engine. To date, this is still the only EF I've seen fully optioned like this from the factory.

The car was delivered on Friday the 7th of October, 1994. Actually the same week in which Dick Johnson and John Bowe won Bathurst in their V8 Falcon. Being only early in October, mine was one of the first EF's manufactured and being a completely new model - it simply turned heads everywhere I went.

10 years later, it's still a great car although 165kW seems like peanuts when compared to the latest 290kW BA GT. Hopefully I won't find a reason to sell and with just over 100,000 Km's travelled, the engine has just been run-in!

November 2004