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Australian Muscle Car - - Muscle News -

As

the wait­ing list for the Ford Mus­tang swells to more than 2000 ea­ger fu­ture own­ers, Holden is still yet to go public with its plans for a V8-pow­ered Amer­i­can mus­cle car.

Ste­fan Ja­coby, who is ul­ti­mately re­spon­si­ble for the Holden prod­uct plan and led the push to put Opels from Europe back into the red lion lineup, has con­firmed there is a rock-solid com­mit­ment from Detroit to a mus­cle car hero af­ter the death of the Com­modore.

Now the ques­tions are which one, when, how much and how will it get to right-hand drive.

The two ob­vi­ous and only con­tenders are the latest Ca­maro and Corvette, with Holden Spe­cial Ve­hi­cles as the po­ten­tial pivot point for any deal. It has the en­gi­neer­ing ex­per­tise, the man­u­fac­tur­ing space and – once the Com­modore goes to its maker – an ur­gent need for a head­line car.

But the Walkin­shaw fam­ily is yet to re­new its con­tract with Fish­er­mans Bend, de­spite more than a year of ne­go­ti­a­tions, pro­vid­ing another po­ten­tial stick­ing point. With­out a con­tract there is no ac­cess to Holden’s fu­ture plan­ning but, with­out ac­cess to the plan, there is less like­li­hood of a re­newed deal.

Although the Corvette has the brighter halo for Holden, it’s the Ca­maro – just re­newed by Amer­ica and for Amer­ica, cut­ting ties to the Com­modor­e­based Ca­maro come­back car – that looks the bet­ter bet.

It’s eas­ier to tweak, would ar­rive with a sharper price, and is more in tune with the needs of Aus­tralia’s mus­cle car fans than the two-seat Corvette sports car.

But, de­spite Ja­coby’s prom­ises, it could be 2018 be­fore there is enough fund­ing and en­gi­neer­ing ex­per­tise – short of a Walkin­shaw pro­ject at Clay­ton – to make a right-hand drive Ca­maro into a re­al­ity in Amer­ica.

By then, the Com­modore will be long gone and Holden will be re­ly­ing on the Euro­pean In­signia, which is just launched as a VXR per­for­mance model, as its fam­ily fighter for Aus­tralia.

Even though V8 fans con­tinue to pro­vide a rich mix in the clos­ing stages of Com­modore pro­duc­tion, to­tal de­mand for the Holden hero con­tin­ues to slide.

In late May, this led to the de­ci­sion to wind pro­duc­tion back from 290 to just 240 cars a day at Holden’s fac­tory in El­iz­a­beth in South Aus­tralia. The knock-on ef­fect was the loss of another 270 work­ers, who were the sub­ject of forced re­dun­dan­cies af­ter in­suf­fi­cient em­ploy­ees took up a vol­un­tary of­fer.

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