Wayne Cook
September 18, 2007
Photos By: Jim Smart

Rich and Cheryl Swangler of Burlington, New Jersey, are the enthusiastic owners of this good-looking '65 Falcon Futura Sedan. They found the car in North Carolina four years ago, and at a price of $300 they both felt they couldn't go wrong. Some of their confidence surely came from the fact that Rich is a professional automobile painter by trade, and his best buddy just happens to own a body shop. Even so, it was a long road to bring the car back to the status you see here. The refurbishment project was extensive, and according to Rich, the work went from rubber to roof and bumper to bumper. The post-bodied Futura took three years to complete.

The deep-purple pearl paint job was Cheryl's idea, and the color is so rich that it looks purple, blue, and black simultaneously. This Falcon is definitely a joint venture, and Rich's influence is easy to find. Not content with the mild-mannered powertrain originally installed, he decided to go the modern route with a Ford EEC IV fuel injection set atop a 5.0 Mustang engine. In fact, the whole 5.0 Mustang driveline was borrowed for this car. The gearbox is a Ford Racing Performance Parts T-5 with a Hurst shifter, and the rear axle is the modern 8.8-inch unit. The 3.90 gearset in the axle makes sure the car has no problem getting with the program.

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The Futura compact clearly has the go power, so the slow power had to be upgraded. Stopping improvement is provided by a set of Granada front-disc brakes. American Racing Torq Thrust II aluminum wheels and BFGoodrich Radial T/A tires with raised white letters give the car the look of a survivor from the Total Performance years. The interior is a complete custom job beautifully executed, and the car's sound system is built to please with a remotely controlled Sony stereo and 10-disc CD changer secreted away in the trunk.

This car is driven mainly to shows, and it's plain to see that Rich and Cheryl have a real winner on their hands. It's a first-rate result of which they are justifiably proud.

The post or sedan body style is one we especially like. It gives the car a sturdy appearance and was a favorite of racers back in the day because the vertical post behind the door contributed greatly to vehicle rigidity.

The Details
'65 Falcon Futura two-door sedan
Owners: Rich and Cheryl Swangler, Burlington, NJ

302 bored-0.030 oversize
FRPP steel crankshaft and rods
FRPP pistons
11:1 compression ratio
FRPP hydraulic-roller camshaft
Edelbrock aluminum cylinder heads with 2.02/1.94 valves
Ford upper and lower EFI intake
Jesel 1.6-ratio rocker arms
BBK cold-air induction kit
BBK 70mm mass-air meter
MSD ignition

FRPP T-5 five-speed manual
Hurst shifter

3.90 gears

Tri-Y headers with 1-5/8-inch-diameter primaries
Stainless-steel 2-1/2-inch exhaust
Flowmaster mufflers

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Front: Stock coil springs, antisway bar, Monroe shocks
Rear: Stock leaf springs, Monroe shocks

Front: Disc using Granada hardware
Rear: Factory drums

Front: American Racing Torq Thrust II, 15x7-inch
Rear: American Racing Torq Thrust II, 15x7-inch

Front: BFGoodrich Radial T/A, P225/60R15
Rear: BFGoodrich Radial T/A, P225/60R15

Purple and white custom leather upholstery
Colorado Custom steering wheel
Auto Meter gauges
Sony AM/FM stereo
6x9 rear speakers
3x5 front speakers
10-disc CD changer

R-M Diamont Viola Pearl (a Porsche color) basecoat/clearcoat finish
fiberglass teardrop hood