Geoff Seiter’s love affair with the mighty XY started in the 1980s, when his wife Jo brought home a Monza Green, 302 Windsor-powered Fairmont. “We did it up a bit,” Geoff explains. “Electric blue, rollcage, tunnel-rammed 351 Cleveland – the lot.”
First published in the October 2022 issue of Street Machine
The couple went as far as Street Machine Summernats with the car, but things changed when a business opportunity arose in the late 80s. “We needed to sell it to get into the timber yard,” Geoff says. “I knew it was a smart business move, but I missed that car every day. I always dreamed of having another XY, but I never ever thought I’d get one. Because we had the business, all our time was basically taken up.”
It was this lingering passion that spurred Jo to surprise Geoff with the Falcon you see here. In 2018, she and eldest son Brandon found the car as a rusty rolling shell in South Australia, trucking it from SA to their native Shepparton in Victoria, without spilling the beans to Geoff. “I came home from work one day and the first thing I saw was an XY out the front,” he recounts. “It had a bow on it and everything. Her exact words were, ‘Spend whatever you want on it!’”
Though the early build stages had a few hiccups, things started falling into place once Geoff turned to Kyabram’s up-and-coming DDR Customs. That initially involved plenty of rust work, before the team got stuck into body mods. Mini-tubs were welded in to handle a pair of 20×10 Simmons FR1 hoops, and the bootlid’s inner frame was modified to shift the boot hinges inward.
The engine bay copped a similar treatment, and now features custom sheet metal. DDR’s Dwayne Young and Dean Simm sorted the panelwork and gapped the whole car to a better-than-factory 5mm, also tucking the bars 10mm inward for a super-tidy look. “The DDR boys are very fussy, so it’s a lot better than I ever thought it would be,” Geoff says.
Ross Mackenna finished it off in a custom-mix PPG metallic hue dubbed ‘Grassy Grey,’ which features a hint of gold. “Sometimes it looks almost black, in sunlight it looks almost silver and you can see the gold in it, and other times you see blue in it,” Geoff says. “My wife wanted to call it ‘50 Shades of Grey’ because it’s hot and sexy with 50 shades!”
Under the bonnet is a 700hp Pavtek-built Cleveland. “I always knew I wanted a nice, tough motor,” Geoff reasons. “We had V8s when we were younger, so it was always going to be a V8.”
The mill is built on a Dart block and measures up at 434 cubes, with SRP pistons hanging off a Scat crank, and ported CHI 3V heads up top alongside a matching manifold. 98 PULP comes in via a Holley 950 carb, itself fed by an Aeromotive pump.
It’s all topped off with a custom DDR-fabbed shaker assembly. “It evolved from not wanting to choke the engine with the small opening the original GT shaker has,” Geoff explains. “When it got back from Pavtek and they’d managed to get 700hp out of it, there was no way we could use an original GT shaker without doing damage to the motor. We had to go bigger, and I wasn’t having an XY without the shaker, so after some planning and design, it was left up to Dean.
A manualised C9 handles the punishment via a Dominator 4500rpm converter, and turns a chrome-moly tailshaft. From there, a nine-inch Truetrac diff with 3.7 gears turns the big Simmons rims from within a custom four-link rear.
On the handling side, the XY runs Territory stoppers front and rear, all fed by a Wilwood master cylinder and hidden booster. There are coil-overs all ’round, with RRS power rack-and-pinion steering replacing the factory steering box. It’s a very different beast to their Fairmont of yore, as Geoff is keen to point out. “There’s no comparison; you’ve got better brakes, suspension, everything. We thought we had good power back then, but shit, it’s nothing like today!”
DDR also managed the interior fit-out, keeping things simple with black GT trim sourced from Winner Products in SA.
Geoff debuted the Falcon at Street Machine Summernats 34 with fairly humble goals. “We entered Street Elite and thought we’d be putting it back in the trailer every night, but we were placed in the Top 60,” he enthuses. Geoff ended up in the running for Grand Champion and also took home second place in Elite Standard Paint. “We were totally taken by surprise,” he says. “All I wanted was a nice, tough car to drive, but I ended up with an incredible build.”
Since the ’Nats trip, the XY has also claimed Best XW-XY at All Ford Day 2022. That’s no small feat in itself, considering the sheer number of cars on show at the country’s biggest Ford show. “It’s a surreal feeling when you’re asked to be a guest at different car events,” Geoff says. “And the comments we get from people, even from blokes in the trade themselves, on how straight it is are really nice to hear.” If it’s not clear by now, he couldn’t be happier with DDR Customs’s handiwork. “This was their first major build, and they went above and beyond. They’ve got heaps of work now!”
For Geoff’s next trick, he plans to return Jo’s favour. “In the future, she would like to do something,” he says. “But it’s bloody expensive at the moment!”
1971 XY FALCON
|PPG custom-mix grey
|Dart block 434ci Cleveland
|Crank & rods:
|Aeromotive in-tank pump
|Aussie Desert Cooler, thermo fans
|Custom 2in headers, twin 3in system
|9in, Truetrac, 3.7:1 gears
|Four-link, Viking coil-overs
|Ford Territory (f & r)
|RRS power rack-and-pinion
|Simmons FR; 19×7 (f), 20×10 (r)
|2155/35R19 (f), 275/35R20 (r)
My wife and boys; DDR Customs; Winner Products, Duane at Pavtek Performance; KJJ Transport.