Holden’s engine shutdown
Holden’s next-generation Commodore has been officially unveiled in a series of images, revealing the styling of the fifth-generation but first-ever fully-imported Commodore range. The 2018 Commodore is essentially a rebranded Opel Insignia liftback that, according to Holden, was “designed in Germany by the Opel team with input from GM Holden’s team.”
On-sale here from February 2018, the newgen Commodore is a five-door hatchback rather Holden took another step towards complete closure of its local manufacturing operations with the last Aussie-made engine built at its Port Melbourne plant in late November. In firing up the final V6 motor Holden ended manufacturing at the Fishermans Bend site which began in 1936. Full-scale engine than a four-door sedan. It measures 74mm shorter and 36mm narrower than the current locally-built road car.
The next-generation Commodore will be built in Germany on GM’s global E2 platform. We can also expect a ‘Sportwagon’ version of the new Commodore and potentially a jacked-up, all-wheel-drive SUV-style five-door reminiscent of the VZ-based Adventra.
Base models will use either a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol or diesel engine. It manufacturing commenced there in 1948 with over 10 million engines built since. A total of 1,137,282 engines were produced at the HFV6 plant which opened in 2003. Of these, 699,806 were for domestic markets and 437,436 were exported internationally – to every continent around the world, except Antarctica. Holden said 32 different configurations were built for various General Motors vehicles. “The employees at Holden Engine Operations have made an enormous contribution to our company and the entire Australian motoring industry,” executive director of manufacturing Richard Phillips said. “The team was recognised just this year with the top prize as the Most Valuable Plant for Productivity across General Motors International, which reflects the pride and dedication of this team. “As is normal practice in the car industry, various components are built ahead of final vehicle assembly which is why Holden’s transition out of local manufacturing continues to happen in a planned, phased and orderly process,” said Mr Phillips.
Holden has said it has built enough of the 3.0-litre and 3.6-litre V6 engines to create a stockpile to meet demand for the final year of the locally-built Commodore models. It claims the 175 employees directly affected by the shutdown of the engine plant have “access to a suite of transition services and up to $3000 in approved training” as part of Holden’s $15m contribution to the federal government’s Growth Fund to support manufacturing employees.