The Vauxhall Victor FD was launched at the London Motor Show of 1967, a year that marked Vauxhall's 60th year of car production.

At first, there was a choice between a 1599cc (98 cu in) or a 1975cc (121cylinder engines were the new `slant four' overhead-camshaft powerplants as used in the Viva HA.

The FD came with coil-sprung suspension all round, ideaaly complementing the car's rack-and-pinion steering.

The launch of the FD marked a new beginning for the Victor with a completely new platform, a revamped body style, and powered by a whole new generation of overhead-camshaft engines, laid over at an angle of 45 degrees in the engine bay.

Introduced initially as s four-door saloons driven by either a 1599cc or 1975cc engine, the FD Victors were joined by a five-door estate from May 1968.

In more than four years, the only significant mechanical up-date came in January 1970, when a new "small" GM automatic transmission took over from the earlier Borg Warner type.

In October 1969, two years after the release of the HD Series Victors, Vauxhall announced the launch of the high-performance VX4/90 version, on sale for just over two years.

Developed from the Victor series the 1970-model VX4190 shared the four-door "Coke bottle" style of long body, as well as the same basic suspension.

Externally, the only obvious recognition points were the fitment of Rostyle road wheels with radial ply tires, and a different grille, while inside the car there was a fully equipped fascia with rev-counter and matching speedometer placed ahead of the driver's eyes.

By using twin Zenith-Stromberg carburettors ( first featured in the Viva GT), the 1975cc overhead-camshaft engine was boosted to 104bhp.

An overdrive gearbox was standard while automatic gearbox from GM was always an option for the more sedate driver.

Not only was the Victor FD incredibly stylish with its Coke bottle design, but it was also technically advanced with its overhead-camshaft engine, capable of reaching 9000rpm.

For the first time, Vauxhall moved over to a four-headlight layout and, thanks to the careful design of the rear axle, handling and road holding were better than most of its competitors.

One exotic touch, a first for Vauxhall, was that the overdrive switch was located in the gear lever knob.

The Series FD Victor was a brisk, almost 100 mph car which handled well at top speed.

Faster, better handling and altogether more capable than the Type 101 Victors, they sold well at a time when the UK car industry was moving slowly but inexorably into the doldrums.


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