Howard Astill-built XC Falcon unveiled at Summernats 35

Peter Lewis's stunning XC seamlessly marries an iconic Falcon shape with 21st-century equipment

Photographers: Chris Thorogood

Thanks to plenty of interesting online stuff shared during its build, one of the most anticipated Street Machine Summernats 35 debuts is this XC Falcon sedan. The car was created by respected long-term car crafter Howard Astill working under his Astill Design banner for client – and fellow Broken Hill born mate – Peter Lewis.

Under the custom-brewed and unmistakably Ford-ish blue PPG paint, this iconic 1970s Falcon hides a terrific innovation: the complete cabin floor and firewall is transplanted from a last-gen FG series Falcon.

Like all Astill-built cars of the past 15 years, this one is built to drive so the transplant allows plenty of twenty-teens cabin comfort and tech to be seamlessly integrated into the 1970s shell.

Sitting in his car, owner Peter gazes at an FG Falcon dash structure, gauges and steering wheel and just below his left hand is the FG’s complete heater/air-con/climate control system. The FG’s pull-up handbrake replaces the antique under-dash unit.

The FG’s front seat frames have been tweaked and trimmed with terrific tan leather, as has the melded XB/FG rear seat. It’s all been built and engineered with the aim of being a 100 per cent street-driven masterpiece.

The FG floor and electronics is the stuff you can’t see straight away; what is blatantly obvious is the superbly crafted body. But even here, many of the long list of tricks and tweaks take a while to notice: The tighter-than-stock panel gaps set to 5mm, tucked bumpers, de-seamed nose cone and smoother door jambs all add to the whole but are so expertly crafted and smoothly integrated that they don’t shout. Would you notice the front wheel arches have been ‘drifted’ forward by 30mm? That’s to match the RodTech independent front end.

With so much FG going on under and inside this XC Falcon, you’d almost expect Something With A Barra In It. Nope. Instead, Peter and Howard aimed higher with the cool – and the cube count – with an 8.6-litre (yes, really) naturally aspirated, pump-fuelled, alloy-headed big block ‘Boss 429’ mill from Kaase Race Engines in the US.

Developing a staunch 770hp at 6400rpm, the Boss-architecture Kaase is tied to a beefed-up ZF six-speed auto … yes, from an FG Falcon. The rear end is a Kugel independent, outrigged from a nine-inch centre. Making at all work is a tuned FG engine management system and modified wiring to fire into eight individual throttle bodies.

Quite simply christened BOSSXC, this car is a terrific rendering of tradition and tech.