Holden import action
FRESH details have emerged about the imported car that will replace the homegrown Holden Commodore within two years, loaded with technology never seen on homegrown models.
Holden is yet to confirm the Commodore will be a rebadged Opel Insignia but it is an open secret in the industry.
Germany’s Autobild magazine reports the secondgeneration Opel Insignia will come with technology such as massage seats and LED matrix headlights (which stay on highbeam without blinding oncoming traffic).
There will be a revised version of General Motors’ OnStar in-car connectivity, which puts drivers in touch with a concierge at the press of a button, to help with directions, restaurant bookings and the like.
Most of these features will appear first, however, on the new Holden Astra hatchback (also built by Opel in Europe) due by the end of the year. OnStar may arrive with the Commodore’s successor, due in late 2017 or early 2018.
Holden had OnStar in the late 1990s and early 2000s but the feature was dropped. However it is expected eventually to return with the new range of imported cars.
The coming Insignia will be significantly larger than the current model, adding to overall length and wheelbase to endow increased cabin space and a more capacious boot than the current model. It will come close to but not match the Commodore’s dimensions.
Autobild says it will shed 100kg thanks to lighter suspension and other components while the body will take on a coupe-like styling.
The model is expected to be sold as a Buick in the US and other markets, an Opel in Europe, a Vauxhall in Britain and a Holden in Australia and New Zealand.
Opel’s Monza show car hints at the new model’s aggressive front styling, which the magazine says aims to appeal to keen drivers and fleets alike.
Engine options will be a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo petrol and a twin turbo diesel for fleet models. The import Commodore SS is likely to be a rebadged Insignia OPC, with a 300kW V6 turbo matched to an eight-speed auto and all-wheeldrive. The current turbo AWD Insignia VXR sports sedan does the 0-100kmh dash in a leisurely 6.8 seconds (slower than a Toyota Aurion V6). The latest Commodore SS V8 takes 5.0 seconds.
Holden insiders tell Carsguide the future Commodore SS replacement won’t be as quick or as cheap as the current V8 but will be swifter than the outgoing Insignia VXR.
New frontier: Opel Insignia (main); Astra (top); and Monza