Sunday, 26 April 2015
A model that has consistently had a huge following in Australia, for its light chassis and strong Nissan-sourced drivetrain.
The 1986-1988 (VL chassis) Holden Commodore was the mainstream large sedan, produced by what is likely Australia's most-loved manufacturer. In the late 80's, these would have been everything from family commuters, to taxi's, to police cars.. with over 150,000 produced - definitely no small amount for <3years of production in a market this small. These would have been everywhere.
The VL Holden Commodore(/Calais) was available in both sedan and wagon, in a range of trim levels (SL, Executive, Berlina, Calais..), and powered by either a 3litre naturally aspirated six, turbo six, or 5litre V8.
The car above is a top-tier Calais Turbo, with the Turbo option (which included other, stronger components) being ~$2000/7.5% on top of the regular Calais, with the 5litre V8 version sitting in-between.
I've always had one helluva soft spot for these, after years of dealing with its (poorer, but arguably better) cousin - the R31 Skyline. Its a Holden, RB-powered, has tons of potential, sounds great, and is just bloody iconic.
I can still remember going to car shows 10-15years ago, and seeing fast, restored examples.. cars with tons of engine work, and neat standard bodies (albeit with custom paint or trim).. a style of modifying that stood apart at the time, and as such has been so timeless. Actually always seemed close in style to the rotor community in Australia..
I took these pics at the Dandenong Valley Holden Car Show a fortnight ago; where even among hundreds (likely..) of spotless cars, this stood out. Seriously.. that engine bay..
For incredibly convenient comparison, there is currently an original red-over-silver Calais Turbo for sale.. in my state.. for a price I couldn't get my wallet out fast enough to pay.
I try to resist browsing locally for this reason - I already have too many cars I like too much.. argh.. if only I had the space..
same one seen on non-intercooled RB's in Japan..
I have no doubt I'll own one eventually.. as these have sat in my mind as 'the next project/restoration' for quite some time.
I just hope by the time I get to it, I'm not left to buying a rusty SL shell as a base...
Done. Love these.