Ford Versus Holden - is there any real difference?

Growing up in Australia, children vigorously defended their father’s honour in the playground. This was especially true when it came to the family car. Most “true blue” Australian’s we’re either a Ford family or a Holden family.

Both cars had their unique differences that kids would tout. However, when compared side by side both had roughly the same fuel economy and performance. More than anything it came down to who the child and their family supported at Bathurst 1000.

Moving forward to 2021, the battle appears to have concluded with Holdens departure. Australian consumer needs have changed and there is less space for two competing performance cars.

Below these Australian classics are reviewed - which will be the best car?


Ford is a remarkable international brand. Australian’s love their ford vehicles. The Ford Ranger was the highest selling car in Australia in 2021. While full of extras and possibly the most reliable cars on the road, Ford have great value cars for any type of motorist.

The Ford Ranger, Ford Mustang, Ford Falcon, Ford Focus, Ford Fiesta and Ford Territory are constantly high performers in the Australian Market.


On paper the Holden is a clear winner for Australians. For 15 years the Holden Commodore was Australia's most popular car. Moving into the later part of the 2010’s sales began to slide for the commodore but it has remained valuable to many car collectors. Recently we have seen antique commodores break sales price records.

Along with the Commodore, Holden has also produced popular models the Holden Colorado, Holden Astra, Holden Captiva and the Holden Fonterra.

So how do Ford and Holden really compare? 

1. Price: When it comes to price, there isn’t much difference between the Ford and Holden Base Models. The Average Ford Ranger will set you back around $38,000 with on-road costs. The Holden Colorado is set at just over $37,000 with on-road costs. All models fluctuate in price dependent on additional ads ons, fuel type and transmission.

2. Fuel Usage: Again, there is no clear winner. The Ford uses around 9.9l per 100km. The Holden vehicles average around 8.9l per 100km. This main difference is because of the Ford’s 4 litre engine compared to the Holden’s 3 litre engine. Depending on your primary use of the car this can make a huge difference.

3. Power: While the Ford has 195kW of power the Holden is right on it’s heals with 190kW. The Torque however is 391Nm for the Ford and only 290Nm for the Holden.

4. Safety: Both cars have six airbags, stability control and a 5-star ANCAP crash rating. The base model of Ford also includes reversing sensors. Both are very safe cars.

5. In the drivers seat: Reviews such as those by RACV and Drive, show that the Ford feels a lot more luxurious to drive. Speed bumps feel better and smother driving is felt around cities. On the other hand, the Holden feels more like a sports car, even with a smaller engine and less Torque. You can drive it to the edge, and it responds.

6. External factors: With both Ford and Holden choosing to close their manufacturing in Australia no car has a clear advantage over the other

So are there any real differences?

No! In reality there are no major differences between the Ford Falcon and the Holden Commodore. The models can be seen as the Australian Labor Party and the Liberal Party of the car world. Whichever model a person chooses, the functionality is similar same – there are really only cosmetic or slight performance differences.

However, this isn’t a negative thing. In fact, having two similar cars has forced the engineers at both Ford and Holden to come up with better features and better performance – as well as lower price – to stay competitive

This may not always be the case however. The real issue is that Australian’s are moving away from this gutsy type of large family car and are looking towards more economical cars. In the future the existence of both cars may come under question.

As popular international brands such as Toyota and Mazda continue to dominate sales figures in Australia. Defending the Ford or the Holden wherever you are may sadly become a thing of the past.

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