Ships Nostalgia banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
!Isee that General Motors are no longer going to produce Holden motor cars in Australia ... must be worth a few comments from "Downunder"https://www.shipsnostalgia.com/images/smilies/umn.gif
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
371 Posts
My first car was a 1962 Holden EK, an ex taxi which had circled the meter twice. Lots of chrome and it did us for about 5 years. Kia ora!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
935 Posts
On my first trip to Australia I remember thinking how very 'English' many things were, but the one thing that stood out as quinesssentially Australian was the Holden, a name totally new to me in 1956. Even passed their works wending our way up the muddy Yarra in a June sleet shower!

Nick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
256 Posts
I have owned 8 Holdens since 1972. Would park a car up, go onto the ship for a month or two, come back, and they would always start. Never let me down.

Six were V8s - I love my horsepower, especially after crawling around the oceans at warp factor Zero for half the year.

For you folks in the UK, I have attached a couple of photos of my first V8 (the Lone-O-Ranger Orange Holden Torana GTR XU-1). It started off as an HB Vauxhall Viva, Holdens stretched it and put various engines up to a hotted-up 3.3 litre six into them. When that engine threw a rod on me while racing at the Manfield circuit in NZ, I bought a brand new 5.0 litre Holden V8 and slotted that in! The Holden factory had already put this V8 into three test cars, but then the Aussie politicians started screaming about 'Killer Supercars', so the XU-1 V8 died a quiet death. Until hundreds of Aussie & Kiwi enthusiasts went ahead and did it anyway!

An excellent condition 3.3 litre XU-1 (originally worth $4,700 in 1973), low mileage, and with original engine & gearbox still fitted, can now go under the hammer for & $85-90,000. Only 1644 of these cars were built, and a mint-condition Bathurst-spec show car with history can now fetch six figures. Not bad for what started as a Vauxhall Viva!

The red Holden Commodore is the last of the 1984 VH model, fitted with a 177 kW 5.0 litre engine. I traded that in for the green 1991 HSV.

I bought the brand new VN HSV SV5000 - only 359 of these 200 kW cars were built, with only 30 coming to NZ - all in British Racing Green. I ran this car for 27 years (did 147,000 km), then 2 of my sons bought it off me, but I am still listed as the owner so it remains a one-owner vehicle and I still take it to HSV car shows occasionally, otherwise it remains parked up in storage.

My current car is one of the very last Holden Commodore V8 cars ever built (manufactured October 5th, 2017, and the factory closed down on October 19th, 2 weeks later). The car was fully designed & developed in Australia, but fitted with the 6.2 litre, 400+ hp Chev Corvette engine. The model was exported to the US, originally as the Buick G8, then as the Chevy SS, and the American cops loved them. They wanted more! A 4-door cop car with rear wheel drive and a big V8!
My sons already have my 30-year-old Holden HSV V8, and for some reason they want this 6.2 litre, 400+ hp black one as well.

Lotsa fun & lotsa memories!
Skilly

ps - And Keith, Holdens actually stopped car manufacturing in Aussie on October 19th, 2017, and have only imported crap vehicles since that date. Holden owners were so pissed off at the weak (no V8s!), insipid-looking foreign vehicle line up that they mainly started buying pickup trucks in protest! That is why Holden sales then dropped to the same levels as they were in 1948, when Holden made it's first car. It was General Motors in Detroit who decided to pull the Holden name - which had started up 164 years earlier making saddles & bridles/leather goods for horses.

When I first dropped the V8 into the XU-1 in 1974, petrol was 11c per litre, and the price of petrol today here in NZ is $2.50 per litre for 95 octane, and even higher for the 98 octane. After bunkering thousands of tons of fuel on the ships over 48 years, I guess paying that price for petrol doesn't even make me blink. I use the wife's SUV for short trips - the V8 only comes out if it is going over 100 km.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,136 Posts
Aftter a drab sooty UK and its staid looking cars emanating from Coventry and Cowley what a revelation on my first trip to Oz in 1957 seeing such as this 53 Holden.
Sad day for Oz with the marque coming to an end.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,177 Posts
I had 3 Holden Commodores as company cars between 1986 and 1997, liked all of them, each with a V6 engine. I also had a couple of Fords which I didn't like as much,one let me down on a trip to Queensland right in the middle of nowhere.

I have to admit that, as my old boss said, there was no such thing as a bad company car.

I have also privately owned a couple of rebadged Holdens. One was a Suzuki ,sold here as a Barina,that lasted 22 years,and only died when I gave it to my grandsons to practice on, and my present Car an Opel Vectra which I have had for 14 years.,and have no complaints despite what Top Gear say about them. I have to admit I am not very fussy,as long as the radio works OK and they dont break down I am happy.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,646 Posts
Holden Monaro

I remember when GM re-introduced the iconic Pontiac GTO from 2004 - 2006. It was a re-badged Holden Monaro 5.7 to 6.0ltr, imported from Oz. It was praised by motoring journalists for it's performance but with the LS1 and later LS2 Chevy Corvette engine that was a given.

The UK got the same car - the Vauxhall Monaro VXR but only with a manual transmission.

Sad to see the loss of Holden - I hadn't heard that.

JJ.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,051 Posts
Here is my 48-215 (FX) Holden. My first car from early 1960s to early 1970s.
Simple, easy to maintain, reliable. (Applause)
Not ideal under heavy braking - tended to go round and round on occasion.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,051 Posts
Just perhaps not the fault of the brakes but of the speed at which you applied them?

Everything is my fault. I am well aware and frequently reminded of that fact. (Jester)

If there was one fact with old Holdens (FX and FJ especially 1948 - 1956 ~) was that they were capable of much greater speeds than their handling and the roads of the day could cope with and many died as a result. No more than about 50 mph and you were fine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
710 Posts
!Isee that General Motors are no longer going to produce Holden motor cars in Australia ... must be worth a few comments from "Downunder"https://www.shipsnostalgia.com/images/smilies/umn.gif
Sad to hear that. My wife was secretary to the National Distribution Manager at GMH Dandenong during the 70s.

Brian
 

·
Spongebob
Joined
·
9,392 Posts
They had their lemon models too, I had a company issue 2 litre 4 cylinder 1980's Commodore that was a gutless wonder

Bob
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
256 Posts
Bob, that model with the 'Starfire' engine (the 3.3 litre 'Blue' engine with two cylinders lopped off) was about the biggest flop they ever made. Got one as a rental once - wouldn't pull the skin off a rice pudding! Should have been called the 'Starflop'!
 

·
Spongebob
Joined
·
9,392 Posts
Skilly, takes me back to when Babcock Aust staff who warranted company cars for their jobs were told that to cover the cost of the new fangled air conditioning in the cars they had to size down to the four cylinder beast.
Imagine a very hot day and a steep hill to climb!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
256 Posts
Bob - I know exactly what you mean. It took the full output of the engine to drive the AC, and left nothing to get up the hill!! HaHa
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,083 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Thanks Skilly ! Great photos.One of the things I loved about getting to Aus .in the sixties was seeing some of these beauties on the roads, bit different to Austin A35s and MINIs in England.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
256 Posts
Keith, I didn't mention that my first car was a 1950, 848 cc lo-light Morris Minor. Some of the streets in Wellington are so steep I could only get up them by going in reverse!

Next car was a green 1955 Morris Oxford. I think it was built from the left-over steel from the Valentine & Matilda tanks, but that 1622 cc BMC 'B' Series engine still had trouble going up the hills, especially with 5 or 6 apprentices on board!(Cloud)

These hill problems are what prompted me to buy a 1971 LC 4-door Holden Torana with a 2.25 litre 6-cylinder engine, which was the first of 3 Toranas I eventually owned (the other two were both LJ XU-1s that I put V8s into). With the 6-cylinder LC car I could at least get into 2nd gear while going up said hills. Then I found there were even faster models available...…………..along with race tracks, rallies & hill climb venues to have fun at, and win a couple of bottles of bubbly to help one forget the costs involved!

But, I have a lot of good memories of those days.

Attached are photos of my 5th Holden V8 - a 2012 Commodore VEII Redline model with a 270 kW, 6 litre Chev engine, Brembo brakes, and the rare red interior as it was a 'Redline' model. Although 4 cylinders would cut out when cruising, it didn't really save much fuel. I sold it with 17,000 km on the clock for the brand new October 2017 car.
 

Attachments

1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top