In­side view

HSV E3

Herald Sun - Motoring - - First Drive -

Prices: ClubS­port R8 $67,600 (man­ual) $69,600 (auto); ClubS­port R8 Tourer $68,600 (m) $70,600 (a); Grange $88,900 (a); GTS $82,900 (m) $84,900 (a); Maloo R8 $64,600 (m) $66,600 (a); 20 years of Maloo R8 $67,600 (m) $69,600 (a); Sen­a­tor Sig­na­ture $83,990 (m/a) En­gine: 6.2-litre V8 Power: 317kW (325kW GTS, Grange) at 6000 revs Torque: 550Nm at 4600 revs Trans­mis­sions: Six-speed man­ual and auto (Grange auto only) Op­tions: Blind spot warn­ing sys­tem $1990 (stan­dard on Grange and Maloo 20th); LPi $5990 (ute $6390); Turismo Rosso leather $1490 (GTS and Sen­a­tor)

But even though HSV en­gi­neers say there are no changes, the clutch felt a lit­tle lighter in the man­ual mod­els.

HSVs clever LPi sys­tem is seam­less. The EDI will dis­play when it is in petrol or gas mode, but you won’t feel any dif­fer­ence.

The ride is firm but fair on the road, though the rear can be noisy over sharp hits.

Mag­netic ride — which is stan­dard on the Grange, Sen­a­tor and the GTS — has a ‘‘lux­ury’’ damper set­ting that takes the sting out of the bumps.

The cars felt more at home in a short ses­sion on the Broad­ford mo­tor­cy­cle race track, north of Mel­bourne. Here the mag­netic ride was switched to ‘‘per­for­mance’’ and the cars flowed through the tricky set of cor­ners.

Switch the trac­tion con­trol to ‘‘com­pet­i­tive’’ mode and you can play hero, al­low­ing the back to drift out, but not far enough to cause alarm. Trac­tion con­trol can also be turned off to­tally.

The ex­tra width in the front tyres of the Grange give it more di­rec­tional sta­bil­ity and turn-in, al­low­ing quick changes of di­rec­tion on the Broad­ford esses.

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