Ed’s Let­ter

It wasn’t this hard to farewell the Fal­con. We al­most can’t quite be­lieve it

Motor (Australia) - - CONTENTS -

The Com­modore’s not dead, but it’s a sad lo­cal farewell

PURELY AS a prod­uct, the FGX Fal­con felt sadly ready to go, or at least be com­pletely over­hauled or re­placed, and the smart Ford fans knew it. Aside from a band of pas­sion­ate em­ploy­ees who kept at it, Ford cor­po­rately had given up on Fal­con long ago, let­ting it wither on the vine with­out the mean­ing­ful in­vest­ment it direly needed. In the end, while the Sprints were a wel­come last hur­rah, a new gen­er­a­tion Fal­con was long over­due. So it was hard and hor­ri­ble to farewell the FGX Fal­con, but more so as a sym­bol for what was lost with it, rather than the prod­uct it­self. For me any­way. Un­for­tu­nately, I can­not say the same of the Aussie-built Holden Com­modore. It’s a tragedy for the loss of jobs, na­tional pride and the prod­uct it­self. Thanks to con­tin­ued in­vest­ment from The Gen­eral, the Aussie-made Com­modore is not just at the top of its game, but at the top of its class. Take the badges off both an LS3 SS-V Red­line and Mus­tang GT and drive them back-to-back, and if you’re any­thing like us, you’d take the four-door. It’s the bet­ter mus­cle car. And yet the one from the coun­try with just 24m peo­ple. What a waste it is for this car to be dis­con­tin­ued, and what a sad thing it is for the tal­ented peo­ple who en­gi­neer and build it. I feel up­set in a sense, but I also don’t un­der­stand the pol­i­tics and eco­nom­ics of pub­lic in­vest­ment in man­u­fac­tur­ing. Mostly, it just feels a bit sur­real and I’m un­will­ing to ac­cept that as of Oc­to­ber 20, 2017, you can’t buy an SS Com­modore any­more. It seems like a big, cruel joke some­one’s pulling.

But it’s very real. And of course, Holden is uniquely Aus­tralian in a way Ford never was, if noth­ing for per­cep­tion. Hav­ing Holden turn into a re­seller of im­ported cars is a dif­fi­cult loss to ex­plain, but an enor­mous one.

This is­sue – 12 months ex­actly after we so-longed Fal­con – we’ve tried to cel­e­brate rather than mourn what we’ve been lucky to have: gen­er­a­tions of awe­some lo­cally-built cars. We’ve cooked up 60 pages of ex­clu­sive Holden con­tent. We’ve got­ten the 10 best Com­modores back to­gether for one last blast; spo­ken to Mark Skaife and John Har­vey; and even driven the ‘new’ one. We’re enor­mously proud of this is­sue, yet some­how also em­bar­rassed we haven’t done more. In fair­ness, it was al­ways go­ing to feel that way.

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