Fuel to the fire: 2 Ford Falcon prototypes spied outside of Detroit

Contradicting reports have been flying back and forth as to whether Ford will move its rear-wheel drive operations to the U.S. from Australia, but it looks as though a recent round of spy shots might have put the debate to rest.

Spy photographers have spotted two Ford Falcon prototypes testing outside of Detroit. It still remains unclear if Ford has given the U.S.-spec Falcon the green light, but these could be the first images of Ford's Australian-born Pontiac G8 fighter.

If the project is allowed to progress, the new rear-wheel drive platform would likely underpin the next-generation Ford Mustang and a replacement for the aging Ford Crown Victoria (think more along the lines of the Interceptor concept). A rear-wheel drive Lincoln model based on the same architecture would also be a distinct possibility. Mercury fans, don't hold your breath for a new rear-wheel drive sports sedan.

However, with new CAFE regulations looming in the not-so-distant future, there is still the possibility that Ford could scrap its rear-wheel drive revolution.

April 1, 2008