We’ve a wealth of toilers
Australia needs some heroes. The 2013 sales numbers out this week show local makers hit a new low, with less than 120,000 Australian-built cars delivered over the past 12 months.
As we slide down the slippery slope into car-making obscurity, and then the pages of automotive history, it’s time to emphasise the on going potential for some genuine pride.
We’re not talking about a Commodore Evoque that’s great value but basic transport, or a Cruze that’s been translated from a Daewoo into the Holden line-up, or even a base-model Camry that’s as efficient as a two-door frost-free.
These need to be cars that make you boast. And smile.
That means something with muscle, something with flair, and something with serious street cred.
Or perhaps a hybrid to prove you’re ahead of the curve on the greening of cars.
In the past, it could have been a Monaro or a true-blue Falcon GT, not just the XR8 that’s being brought back this year as a Blue Oval tickle for the final makeover of the Broadmeadows battler.
In the past it could even have been — believe it or not — a Toyota HiLux with TRD tweaking. And, no, that’s not a spelling mistake, as the TRD division showed potential before its early end.
A Falcon XR6 Turbo definitely qualifies, so does a Holden Statesman. Even the Toyota Avalon — a car that was originally going to be called the Centaur — gave surprising smiles as a taxi runner.
So, in the first month of 2014 with no relief in sight for the local makers — and Toyota teetering on the edge of a pullout — are there still cars that can bring home the Ashes? You betcha.