Coupe’s away, but watch for Camaro
THE signs are looking more promising for a successor to the Holden Monaro, but don’t expect to see the Coupe 60 in showrooms.
The brilliant two-door VE, which starred at the Melbourne Motor Show and is almost certain to make a global tour with General Motors, has already been sent to the backburner by GM global product boss Bob Lutz.
The Lutzinator, as he is known in the US, has steamrolled all sorts of new-model programs including the Pontiac G8 version of the Commodore sedan and ute, but says the coming crackdown on fuel economy in the US means cars such as the V8 Holden coupe will not go ahead.
So, where is the new coupe coming from?
Take another look at the Chevrolet Camaro (above), already fully approved and being developed in Australia for production and sale in the US. But now there is just a tiny tease pointing to a potential showroom appearance in Australia. And it comes from Europe, of all places.
Wayne Brannon, the head of Chevrolet Europe, has just given the clearest sign yet that GM has bigger plans for the Camaro than just a homegrown retro muscle car.
‘‘The business case for righthand-drive Camaros may not be positive, but we’re doing it anyway,’’ Brannon says.
So Brannon is a believer in the right-drive potential for Europe, which means Britain, and that would mean a clear shot for Australia. It could be sold as an HSV spin-off but it is more likely to be run through the GM Premium Brands channel that is already committed to Saab, Hummer and — later this year — Cadillac.
But GM Holden is not convinced and says Brannon’s bullish talk is just that, talk.
GMH spokesman John Lindsay says: ‘‘There has been no official confirmation yet that Camaro will be available in right-hand drive.
‘‘But if it does end up being done in right-hand drive, like all cars in the GM portfolio, we’d certainly have a look to see if it was a fit for this market.’’