1964 Falcon: Heart Transplant

Our 1964 Falcon Futura has been without a motor for quite sometime, we figured it was time to give it a heart!

According to the VIN, this car was originally equipped with a 170 six cylinder with a 3 speed manual transmission. The transmission would have been column shifted with a non synchronized first gear. If you’re wondering what this means, then you’re probably not the only one.

This car is a stick shift, but rather the shifter being on the floor, it’s sideways on the steering column. At first glance one would think it’s a column shift automatic, however a peek at the third pedal would raise a few questions to the average person. The non synchronized first gear means that the car needs to be at a full stop in order to put the transmission in first gear. Sounds annoying, doesn’t it? These factory non synchronized transmission were not the most durable or robust units either.

We wanted to stick with the same engine and transmission combination, but decided to change it up a bit so we didn’t have to deal with the drawbacks of an antiquated transmission and slightly anemic motor. A quick search on craigslist found a few candidates.

A couple phone calls later and we’d bought a 200 inline six motor from a 1966 mustang and a 3 speed toploader transmission out of a 1967 mustang. Slightly more power and a durable transmission to boot! These transmissions were found behind V8 cars and inline six cars so they will interchange. Under normal circumstances, the motor should be blue. However, in 1964, the factory 170 motor would have been painted fully black with a red valve cover and red air cleaner.


The plan was to make this car seem as stock as possible, so the motor we picked up got a fresh coat of paint courtesy of some Duplicolor engine enamel. The motor turned out surprisingly well after a thorough degreasing along with all the prep required to paint. We essentially dressed the our little 200 so that at first glance it would appear to be a 170.

securedownload (3)

A freshly resurfaced flywheel was installed along with a new original style 3 finger clutch and the motor was dropped in the engine bay. A used radiator was bought from a 1965 mustang with a six cylinder, given a fresh coat of paint then installed in the engine bay. A majority of the mechanical parts for this car were sourced from early mustangs since so many of them interchange.

photo 4 (5)

Now, we wouldn’t drop in our gem of a motor with cleaning and repainting our engine bay, so that’s just what we did!

photo 2 (6) (2)Our little Falcon has already come a long way since it was found tucked away in someone’s backyard. After being nearly given up on many times in the last 20 years, it’s finally getting the attention it deserves!  Everyday we’re getting one step closer to getting it back on the road where it belongs.