Australia Getting the Chevy Camaro SS, Colorado, and Silverado HD Through HSV
Living in Australia and feeling depressed over Holden being shut down? Can’t get your V-8 fix now that Holden Special Vehicles (HSV) is no longer building cool, beefed-up versions of the Commodore? Well, here’s some good news for ya: HSV just announced that it will convert the Camaro SS to right-hand drive for the Australian market starting 2018. The announcement is part of a new agreement struck between HSV and Holden, which will work together to bring new GM vehicles Down Under. The brands also unveiled a joint logo that now contains the lion and helmet used by Holden and HSV in the past.
The Camaro will be brought to Australia in SS trim, powered by the naturally aspirated, 6.2-liter V-8. No four-cylinder or V-6 options, but also no ZL1. It will also be the higher-level 2SS version with various performance and convenience upgrades. No info on pricing yet, but expect it to be more expensive than the competing Ford Mustang GT after the right-hand-drive conversion. Production will begin in July 2018.
Alongside the Camaro SS, HSV will also modify the the Colorado and heavy-duty Silverado 2500HD for right-hand-drive use. The Colorado will also wear a "SportsCat" badge and will continue to use a Holden logo as it did until now. The Silverado 2500HD, on the other hand, will sold as a Chevrolet, just like the Camaro SS. The Colorado will be available in two versions, but none will get more power. However, a hotter version of the truck is likely to be followed as a direct rival for the upcoming Ford Ranger Raptor. The Colorado SportsCat will go into production in late January as HSV first Chevrolet conversion. Silverado conversions will commence in April 2018.
Aussies are Planning to Build the Best Road in the World
As the auto industry continues to embrace electric cars, governments around the world are continuing their own march of ramping up efforts to accommodate the rise of electric vehicles. The local governments of Paris, Madrid, Athens, and Mexico City have all said that they’ll ban diesel cars from city centers by 2025. More recently, the British government said that the sale of gas and diesel cars will be banned from 2040, a move that France also plans to make. Now Australia’s getting in on the action with plans to build a massive superhighway along the coast of Queensland near the Great Barrier Reef. This superhighway, according to Reuters, will be built for electric cars.
The project itself is as grandiose as it is ambitious. If it comes to fruition, the superhighway will cover a distance of 1,118 miles, running from Coolangatta in the south of Cairns and stretching all the way to Cairns in the northern area of Queensland. To put that in perspective, that 1,118-mile distance is roughly the same as going from New York, New York to Miami, Florida. While there is still no timetable as to when this superhighway will be built, there are also plans to equip this long stretch of road with charging stations, spread out along its entire length. According to reports, these stations will be provided by Tritium and Schneider Electric, a local based manufacturer that plans to offer free charging to all plug-in vehicles who will use the road. Should the superhighway become a reality, its sheer size and location – in reach of the majestic Great Barrier Reef – could turn it into one of the best highways in the world, and quite certainly, the quietest of them all too.
Continue after the jump to read the full story.
2016 HSV ClubSport R8 Track Edition
Launched in 2013, the current ClubSport is the entry-level sedan in the HSV range, which in turn is the high-performance division of Holden. A beefed-up version of the Commodore VF, the Gen-F HSV ClubSport features enhanced aerodynamics, a sportier interior, and a high-revving, naturally aspirated V-8 engine. The unit in question is a revised version of the 6.2-liter LS3 used in the previous generation Chevrolet Corvette and Camaro. A slightly more powerful variant is offered under the ClubSport R8 badge. The performance-oriented sedan will be discontinued in 2017, when Holden will cease all operations in Australia.
The last couple of years have seen Holden and HSV launch several special-edition models of the Commodore. With the sedan so close to exiting the market, HSV has prepared three final versions of the ClubSport R8, one of which is the Track Edition. Limited to only 156 units, the R8 Track Edition is essentially a standard R8 under the hood, but borrows most of its exterior features from the supercharged ClubSport GTS and sports a few performance improvements underneath.
“Given the unique track-inspired content, the sharp pricing and the fact that these will be the last LS3 ClubSport R8’s ever built, we’re anticipating strong demand”, said Tim Jackson, HSV’s managing director. The Track Edition was launched alongside the Black SV and Grange SV versions and joins the Clubsport R8 25th Anniversary Edition as one of the last HSVs to leave the factory.
Continue reading to learn more about the HSV ClubSport R8 Track Edition.
With a revised version of the Toyota GT 86 underway, the Japanese coupe might finally get the more powerful drivetrain enthusiasts have been clamoring about since its launch in 2012. Meanwhile, Toyota is trying to keep customers happy with all sorts of special-edition models. Following the introduction of the Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0 at the 2015 SEMA Show, Toyota has crafted yet another limited-edition coupe. This time around, it’s being offered in Australia and goes by the name GT 86 Blackline.
Based on the range-topping 86 GTS, the Blackline package adds a subtle body kit, a new paint scheme, new wheels, and a sportier interior, most of which is sourced from TRD — Toyota’s motorsport division.
Limited to only 450 units, offered with both manual and automatic transmissions, the GT 86 Blackline marks the start of a six-month countdown to the first round of the Toyota 86 Racing Series. For the uninitiated, it’s a one-make racing series that’s set to commence in Australia in May 2016. The new series, which was created for pro-am drivers, will run as a support category to the highly popular V8 Supercars Championship.
Each entrant will drive a production-based T86RS model, with details about the car to be released soon. In the meantime, let’s have a closer look at the GT 86 Blackline limited-edition below.
Continue reading to learn more about the Toyota GT 86 Blackline.
The recent debuts two all-new SUVs – the 2016 Toyota Fortuner and 2015 Ford Everest – have reignited interest in the seven-passenger, body-on-frame SUV segment, particularly in Australia where such vehicles enjoy healthy sales. However, one stalwart in the segment is the Isuzu mu-X, an SUV that shares all the same important criteria as the others.
Isuzu’s seven-passenger people hauler rides on a ladder frame design with an independent front suspension and a solid rear axle sprung with a multi-link and coil design. The mu-X also sports a turbodiesel powertrain, available manual transmission, and optional 4WD. On paper, the mu-X certainly has the right stuff.
Ironically, much of that can be credited to General Motors – the parent company to one of the mu-X’s closest rivals, the 2012 Holden Colorado 7. Reminiscent of GM and Isuzu’s past partnership in the U.S., the mu-X is a rebadged version of the Holden Colorado 7. Here in the States, GM rebadged the first-generation Chevrolet Colorado midsize pickup truck as the 2004 Isuzu i-Series and the Chevrolet Trailblazer SUV as the Isuzu Ascender.
Unlike that past partnership, Isuzu is providing its own powertrain for the mu-X, including a 3.0-liter inline four-cylinder turbodiesel and five-speed transmissions in place of the Holden’s 2.8-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel and six-speed manual and automatic gearboxes. Beyond that, the Colorado 7 and mu-X are strikingly similar. Still, both compete against each other in the Australian market and will have to fend off the new Fortuner and Everest from Toyota and Ford.
So let’s take a deeper dive into the Isuzu mu-X.
Continue reading to learn more about the Isuzu MU-X.
With Holden set to cease all manufacturing by the end of 2017, the current VF-generation and all its derivatives will become the final evolution of the iconic Commodore nameplate. Its disappearance will also mark the end of the HSV (Holden Special Vehicles) brand, Australia’s leading performance-car manufacturer, as we know it. But until that happens, HSV is rolling out a limited-edition ClubSport R8 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the ClubSport moniker. Much like any other Holden product, this performance sedan won’t be sold outside Australia and New Zealand.
As its name suggests, the ClubSport R8 25th Anniversary Edition is based on the ClubSport model, which is the entry-level sedan in the HSV range. It sits below the ultra-powerful GTS and the luxurious Signature Series, and it is offered in two trims. This special-edition features the R8 package, which adds more horsepower and extra features to the standard model.
Similar to the 20th Anniversary Edition that was launched in 2000, the 25th Anniversary Edition will be built in very limited quantities and employ a range of bespoke features inside and out.
"Along with GTS, ClubSport has been one of the mainstays of the HSV lineup through its proud history", said HSV Managing Director, Tim Jackson. "We’re sure the added value offered with the 25th Anniversary ClubSport R8 will be well received by our fans."
Continue reading to learn more about the HSV ClubSport R8 25th Anniversary Edition.
Toyota has just announced an all-new SUV for the Australian market – the Fortuner. Based on the newest version of the venerable Hilux pickup truck, the Fortuner is a rugged, body-on-frame SUV with seating for seven that’s powered by the same turbodiesel engine found in the Hilux and comes standard with a part-time, two-speed 4WD system and electronic locking rear differential.
Tony Cramb, Toyota Australia’s executive director of sales and marketing, says the Fortuner is the brand’s diesel alternative to the Kluger, Australia’s version of the Highlander. The Fortuner is also far more rugged and trail-ready than the unibody Kluger while slotting under the surprisingly similar Land Cruiser Prado in terms of luxury and price. Though both the Prado and Fortuner are traditional SUVs with three rows of seats for seven people, the two vehicles will appeal to different audiences.
Toyota’s move to introduce the Fortuner makes more sense when considering both 2015 Ford Everest and Isuzu MU-X – both of which are based on their respective pickup truck platforms.
The Fortuner will arrive in Australian dealerships in October 2015 as a 2016 model and sale for a price that is still undisclosed. Early estimations suggest a starting price of around $45,000.
Continue reading for the full story.
Australian start-up Quantum Performance Vehicles has unveiled its very first car, and it has a one-to-one power-to-weight ratio, enough wing to drive upside down, and promises to “give the world’s top hyper cars a run for their money.” It’s called the GP700, and it’s the product of a 7-year-long development process between the father/son team of Jeff and Andrew David.
Based out of Gisborne, northwest of Melbourne, Quantum wasn’t shy in blessing its new flagship with some truly astounding stats. Here’s just a few: the power-to-weight ratio is 60 percent better than a Bugatti Veyron, there’s more longitudinal force during peak acceleration than a free-fall skydive (1.2 G’s vs. 1.0 G’s), there’s enough lateral grip when cornering at 180 km/h (112 mph) to approach the same forces experienced during the launch of the space shuttle (2.5 G’s vs. 3.0 G’s), and there’s enough braking force to rival landing on an aircraft carrier (2.0 G’s).
“The GP700 was designed with pure drivability and functionality in mind, from the aerodynamic bodywork to the pure driver-centric interior,” says Andrew David on Quantum’s website.
So then, it’s probably safe to assume the car will rip apexes like a monster truck pulling dandelions. However, the GP700 is also, amazingly, road legal.
Sounds like a winning combination, doesn’t it? Read on to find out if it actually works.
Continue reading to learn more about the Quantum GP700.
Grand Theft Auto V is one of the hottest games of the year, just like pretty much every other iteration of GTA since it debuted on PS One all those years ago. The game takes place in a fictitious city and follows the lives of three fictitious criminals as the go and raise all sorts of fictitious hell. Do you catch a common theme in that last sentence? If you did, then congratulations, the rational side of your brain is functional. If not, well, then you must be one of the 40,000 people who signed the petition to have GTA V pulled from Kmart and Target Shelves in Australia because of the violence it contains.
Specifically, the violence in question is on the women of the game — you know, violence on men is perfectly fine — and how it portrays women as prostitutes and strippers. I have never played GTA V — I am a responsible parent, so I can’t play it at home — so I cannot comment on what these folks are claiming, but as I recall, you can kick the ass of whoever you like, man or woman, in GTA. Additionally, not every woman in any GTA game is depicted as a stripper or prostitute. Some of them are, but most of them are simply random women roaming the streets.
In response to this violence and overall bad impression of women in the game three women who were subjected to violence in their lives decided to start the petition to have the game pulled from the stores on Change.org. The petition managed to gain 40,000 signatures, so Target and Kmart took action by removing the game.The petition states "It’s a game that encourages players to murder women for entertainment. The incentive is to commit sexual violence against women, then abuse or kill them to proceed or get ’health’ points," but what it fails to mention is that the game is rated R18+ in Australia (the same as the ESRB’s M rating in the U.S.) and is intended for adults, not children.
The women then went on to say "To see this violence that we lived through turned into a form of entertainment is sickening and causes us great pain and harm." That statement irks me greatly, as I want to simply say "then don’t watch it..."
A counter petition was launched to keep the game on shelves, but Target and Kmart chose to ignore that one. So to our poor Aussie fans of GTA V, you won’t be able to buy you GTA V and Underoos at the same place any longer.
Click past the jump to read more about this topic.
When it comes to police cars, Dubai is by far the city with the coolest fleet of paddy wagons. The local police department is packed with vehicles such as the Aston Martin One-77, Brabus G63 AMG, Lamborghini Aventador and the Ferrari FF. Definitely not a city in which you would want to break the law or attempt to evade the boys in blue. But Dubai isn’t the only municipality patrolled by sports cars or insanely-fast sedans. Italy has a police-spec Lambo Huracan, and the Brits use a Lotus Evora S and a McLaren 12C.
Australia, who has its own cool police cruiser in the Holden Commodore-based HSV GTS, has just received a brand-new toy in the form of a Porsche 911 Carrera. Provided by the company’s Australian arm as part of a partnership with the New South Wales Police Force, the German sports car won’t be used for highway duties, as its performance numbers might indicate. Instead, it will be used to raise awareness among younger drivers and as a show car during various events. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s a shame this gorgeous sports car won’t get some proper highway action.
Click past the jump to read more about the Porsche 911 Carrera NSW Police Car.
There are many reasons why our very own Christian handed Nissan the award for "Best Enthusiast Brand", and one of then is that the Japanese manufacturer is racing on more levels than most automakers. From super-fast Formula 1 and Le Mans racing to Australian touring car hooning known as V8 Supercars, Nissan has been revving its engines and showcasing technology at the top of the motorsport realm for years now.
Granted, its V8 Supercar efforts haven’t been particularly successful, but that didn’t stop Nissan from rolling out a special-edition hatchback ahead of the 2014 Bathurst 1000, Australia’s most iconic motorsport event. The vehicle in question, a slightly customized Pulsar SSS, hits Nissan’s Australian dealerships just in time to celebrate 30 years since Nissan’s first Bathurst 1000 pole position, won by George Fury in the Bluebird Turbo in 1984. Read on to find more about this limited-edition hatch.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Nissan Pulsar SSS Heritage Edition.
The Holden Commodore - imported to the U.S. in sedan guise as the Chevrolet SS - may be living its final years on the market, but the Australian vehicle continues to deliver a lot of excitement thanks to special-edition models. September 2014 already brought us the enticing HSV GTS Maloo, the most powerful Ute ever built in the land Down Under. Unlike the GTS Maloo, whose purpose was to become the most extreme ute you can buy at a dealership, this latest special-edition Commodore is based on the SS V model and pays tribute to one of Australia’s most famous racing drivers.
We are talking about Craig Lowndes, who made its first appearance in the V8 Supercar series in 1994, as a 20-year-old rookie. Lowndes finished second in Australia’s greatest race, the Bathurst 1000, that year, and then went on to become the greatest driver in Holden’s rich motorsports history. With 43 wins and three V8 Supercar championships to his name, Lowndes definitely deserves to have a Holden Commodore bearing his name. Read on to find out more about this unique sedan.
Click past the jump to read more about the Holden Commodore Craig Lowndes Special Edition.
Subaru has another special-edition model for the BRZ. Raise your hand if you think it’s becoming a tad too much. I don’t mind that the company wants the sports coupe to improve its on-road presence, but there’s been a lot of these lately and none of them come with the upgrade we all really want. You know, that part about improving the car’s performance capabilities.
Granted, this BRZ Special Edition does have a few nice additions, especially those GT stripes that add an aggressive touch to the sports car. It’s also a different touch from what we’re used to. Heck, some people might think the stripes themselves are worth the "Special Edition" label attached to the model.
Add all the new exterior and interior upgrades, and they all combine to make a pretty appealing package that a lot of customers will definitely be interested in. But even with all those additions, there’s still that one little piece of the puzzle that’s missing, and we all know what it is (read: more power).
I’m not getting my hopes up, but then again, stranger things have happened.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Subaru BRZ Special Edition.
The Ford Falcon has been in production since 1960, and since 1972, it’s been entirely a product of Australia — designed, developed, and produced entirely separate from the U.S. It holds the position of Australia’s best-selling car, and sells with a variety of engines and trim levels. Over the last seven generations, more than 3 million of them have been sold. That’s a lot of Falcons. They even produce a Ranchero-like ute version that takes the awesomeness to a whole new level. Heading into 2015, Ford is releasing a new performance version of the Falcon, dubbed the FPV GT F.
Sometimes, I swear Ford is just trying to make its customers in the United States jealous of its customers in Australia. Sure, they gave the U.S. a much more capable Focus than was previously available, the tiny-but-flickable Fiesta, and a number of quite enjoyable ST models, but even so, it seems like the Australians have all the fun.
Even as the Fusion and Taurus improve leaps and bounds over their predecessors, neither sedan is offered with a V-8, and neither is rear-wheel drive. The Australian Ford Falcon, however, comes with both rear-wheel-drive and an optional V-8, which makes it much more desirable than the Fusion or even the Taurus in the United States. If you want tail-out fun from an American sedan, then the Ford Falcon is one of those cars that you know you love, but you know you can’t have.
To make things worse, Ford has just introduced the Falcon-based 2015 FPV GT F, a 5.0-liter, V-8 monster of a sedan that makes more horsepower than a Mustang GT and still manages to have the capacity to drive your friends down to the neighborhood pub.
If you were jealous of the Ford Falcon before, the 2015 FPV GT F will leave you even more jealous than before.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 FPV GT F.
Microsoft’s continued promotion for the upcoming release of Forza Motorsport has gone to a whole new level after announcing that it was fielding a specially prepared Holden VF Commodore to compete at the 2013 Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000, the V8 Supercar Series’ equivalent of Formula One’s Monaco Grand Prix.
Since Bathurst will be included as one of the race tracks in Forza 5, it represented an opportunity for Microsoft and its subsidiary studio, Turn 10 (the folks who made the game!), to capitalize on promoting the highly anticipated game ahead of its November 22 release, while also turning some heads with an incredibly worked-on Holden VF Commodore race car.
The car came to life as a collaborative project between Triple Eight Race Engineering and Xbox Australia, with the intention of running it up Bathurst in the hopes of actually winning the crown jewel race of the V8 Supercar Series calendar.
The race car’s emerald green color is direct homage to the Xbox’s traditional color, while all the bells and whistles of a full-fledged race car were all installed. Exterior components, like a front lip spoiler, the wider wheel arches, the side lamps and the large rear wing, can be found on the VF Commodore. It’s the same story with the interior where all the usual accessories of the road car were taken out to accommodate all the safety equipment that is required for race cars.
Finally, the Xbox One Racing VF Commodore boasts of a 5.0-liter, V-8 engine that produces 650 horsepower, allowing it to hit 100 km/h (62 mph) in 3.3 seconds to go with a top speed of 185 mph.
Click past the jump to read about the 2013 Holden VF Commodore
It may have taken longer than expected, but the auction winnerhttps://www.topspeed.com/cars/car-n... of the Nissan GT-R Bolt Gold finally saw his prized win in the flesh after the car was officially delivered at a special ceremony held in Melbourne, Australia.
Late last year, the bidder put down an astounding $187,000 bid on the two-off GT-R dedicated to Olympic gold medalist Usain Bolt with the funds from the auction going to Bolt’s foundation in his native Jamaica. After months of waiting, including what we imagine to be a lot of waking up wishing to see the car in his garage, the new owner of the GT-R Bolt Gold can finally enjoy the car that he paid a princely sum for.
If we were in his position, we’d understand why the wait would’ve been really excruciating. It’s hard enough to wait months on end while your $187,100 is presumably sitting somewhere without you being able to touch the item that you purchased it for.
But we also understand how exciting it must’ve been to finally lay your eyes on the car you waited for so long to see. And the fact that there are only two models of this car in existence - the other one is with Bolt himself - makes it that much sweeter.
We’re just hoping that the proud owner over there in Australia takes good care of his new pride and joy. You waited so long for it, mate. Better make sure it sticks around with you for a long time too.
Click past the jump to read about the Nissan GT-R Bolt Gold
Two things we’ve come to learn about Subaru in the past month: it has a special place in its heart for Australia and its doing all it can to give the soon-to-depart current-generation WRX the swan song it deserves.
The Japanese automaker’s Australian arm is introducing a limited-edition WRX model in Australia, called the WRX RS40. If you’re wondering what the "RS40" means, that’s an allusion to Subaru’s 40th anniversary in Australia and considering that the legendary sports sedan is nearing its last legs, it was only appropriate for the folks Down Under to give it a proper send-off on the same year Subaru is celebrating the big "4-0" in the country.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the WRX RS40 dons the iconic WR Blue Mica finish that has become a trademark for the model for so many years. Subaru also added a slew of new aero components, including STI front and rear spoilers, a strut-tower brace, special "RS40" badges, and of course, a set of 17-inch gold-finished alloy wheels.
There aren’t a whole lot of interior modificatons, but where it lacks in quantity, it more than makes up for in quality. Recaro sport seats with blue Alcantara inserts are the unquestioned highlight of the cabin upgrades and are complemented by a new short-throw shifter, and an individually numbered plaque.
No performance upgrades were given to the WRX RS40, so expect the same 2.5-liter turbocharged engine that develops a tidy 195kW (261 horsepower) at 6,000 rpm and 343 Nm (253 pound-feet) of torque at 4,000 rpm. Suby will offer only 300 units, each priced at AUD$4,500 over the base WRX price.
Unfortunately, it’s exclusive to Australia so if you’re thinking of getting one, you’ll probably have to jump through multiple hoops to get one.
Click past the jump to read about the base WRX STI
Back in the 1980s Paul Halstead tried to enter the automotive market with an Alfa Romeo-based supercar named the HAL Giocattolo. Unfortunately things didn’t go as well as he planned and this attempt left him broke. Now, after more than 30 years Halstead is ready for another attempt and he plans to unveil a new supercar.
According to the first details we have the new supercar will be unveiled in the next three years and will feature a very aggressive and modern design language. The model will also be similar to the McLaren F1: its cockpit will feature a three staggered seats, with the driver placed in a central position.
Under the hood, the new supercar will get a 16-cylinder engine, which will include two Chevrolet V8 engines bolted together side-by-side on 45 degree angles. This system is rumored to deliver an output of about 1,200 horsepower, putting it right next to the Bugatti Veyron. Unlike the Veyron, however, the new Aussie supercar will only be capable to hit a top speed of 198 mph.
The engine will be mated to a six-speed sequential gearbox, which already required an $100,000 investment.
Most likely, the new model will be a one-off edition, but Halstead also wants it to be production ready, even if he plans to spend only $1 million to build his dream. Additionally, Halstead has mentioned that his new creation may carry the same HAL Giocattolo name as his first creation.
Click past the jump to read more about the first supercar developed by Halstead: the HAL Giocattolo.
The Subaru BRZ’s global popularity is unquestioned. Since making its debut a little over a year ago, the BRZ has become quite the seller for Subaru. It still doesn’t have the cache of the Impreza, but it’s safe to say that it’s getting there.
It certainly helps the case of the BRZ that markets like Australia, which has long been a hotbed for muscle cars, has embraced a sports car like the BRZ to the point that it’s offering up a special edition aimed only at the market from "down under."
Granted, the whole "BRZ S" designation only alludes to a number of packages that are being offered as add-ons to the BRZ, but the mere inclination of Subaru’s Australian arm to showcase and offer these programs is a testament to the rising popularity of the BRZ in the Aussie market.
Click past the jump to read more about the Subaru BRZ S
Holden Special Vehicles (HSV) announced today the first details on the Gen-F lineup, which it has dubbed "the greatest performance production cars ever built in Australia." The new Gen-F lineup will include five different vehicles: Maloo, Clubsport /Clubsport Tourer, Senator Signature and the range-topping GTS.
The new Gen-F lineup received a more sophisticated, modern and integrated design, with the GTS version being distinguished by updated bumpers, a larger super-flow performance spoiler finished in body color with “Pitch Black” accenting and 20-inch forged-alloy wheels in Satin Graphite.
Holden is also offering an all-new premium interior with new seats and fabrics, instrument panel, cluster, gauges, center console, trims and finishes. The GTS version if offering tons of standard features, like its 9-speaker Bose premium audio system that includes: an 8-inch high-resolution, color touch-screen display; a USB input; single CD player with MP3 compatibility; hard-drive storage; and full iPod integration.
Click past the jump to read more about the HSV GTS.