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With Six You Get A Turbo - 1963 Ford Falcon Futura

No one thinks that a lowly '63 Falcon could be 11-second quick.

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'63 Ford Falcon Futura
Owner: Kelly McLearran
Hometown: Tucson, Arizona, land of perpetual sun.

Engine: '78 Ford inline-six displacing a whopping 255 ci. The block is bored 0.040-over with stock replacement pistons, Total Seal rings, 8.0:1 compression and a seven-main-bearing stock crank with a mile-long 3.91-inch stroke. Stock bore is 3.68 inches.

Head: This is undoubtedly the weakest part of the chain since it's not even a crossflow-style head. Instead, the exhaust is on the same side of the head as the intake, where exhaust heat builds right into the intake. The mildly ported head sports miniscule1.75-inch intake valves.

Camshaft: Ford Six Performance Parts supplied the Clay Smith single-pattern grind with an advertised duration of 274 degrees and duration at 0.050 of 224 degrees with 0.450-inch lift using 1.65 Australian Yella Terra roller rockers.

Intake: The only thing more restrictive than the head is the integral log-style intake manifold. Just imagine a pipe with stubs sticking out of it and you get the idea. The original one-barrel carb has been replaced with a 350-cfm Holley two-barrel.

Headers: Will welded his own fabricated header with 1.5-inch primaries leading into a 2.5-inch log that feeds directly into the turbo. The single exhaust leads to a lone Borla muffler in the stock location.

Turbo: This is the heart of the beast. The hair dryer is a Garrett TO4 with a 57mm inducer. The small exhaust housing spins the turbo up quickly to make the power. Hidden under the left front fender is a Toyota air-to-air aftercooler.

Trans: The 250ci six allows the use of a V-8-style C4 automatic built by Performance Automatic utilizing a Hughes 3,500-stall converter and a reverse-manual valvebody controlled by a B&M shifter.

Rearend: When the McLearrans bought the little Falcon, it already had a 9-inch under its flanks complete with overkill 33-spline Moser axles, a spool, and 4.56:1 gears. Now it sports 3.50:1 gears.

Suspension: The front suspension is painfully stock, right down to the six-cylinder springs with only a set of Competition Engineering shocks set at 70/30 and a set of limiter straps. The rear is more aggressive with a Chris Alston Chassisworks ladder-bar setup and coilover shocks.

Wheels and tires: Kelly wanted wheels equally as dissimilar as the car, so they chose a set of American Salt Flat Special 15x4s for the front mounted with M/T 24x4.5-15 ET Fronts with 15x8s in the back mounted with M/T 235/60R-15 ET Street Radials.

Interior: The car is quick enough to demand a roll bar, but for now the stock bench seats and interior are graced with a set of Auto Meter gauges including a boost gauge and a tach while Kelly is restrained with an RCI five-point harness. In the glovebox is the original 1963 bill of sale for $2,450.50 that includes a deduction of $58.50 for the radio-delete option.

Body: Nothing is more stock than this Falcon's Corinthian White factory paint and the Mount Sterling, Illinois, dealer sticker on the back bumper. The Falcon weighs a svelte 2,610 pounds without driver.

Performance: The best run to date is 11.85 at 110.55 mph.

Crew: Ford Six Performance Parts, Murray Christiansen Welding, Brian Tuuri, Ron Tuuri, KJ Jones Racing, Don's Hot Rod Shop, B&B Towing, and Machine Works.

All high-performance projects are the result of collaborative efforts, and the McLearrans are quick to acknowledge Ford Six Performance Parts ( and, which were incredibly helpful when it came to building this inline scheme. FSPP is well aware of the inline-six's cylinder head's limitations and is currently perfecting its own aluminum high-performance cylinder head. The company plans to have a new aluminum cylinder head out by Spring 2006 in case we've planted an evil inline seed.

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