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This is not the new gto it A grand prix,what an relief

Grand Prix by Holden: GM's Australian outpost wants to follow up the GTO with a sedan




By Joshua Dowling
Photography by Charlie Gearside

Keeping to the tire tracks of the Pontiac GTO, General Motors's Australian outpost wants to export its new rear-drive V-8 sport sedan to the U.S. as the next Pontiac Grand Prix.

GM's Australian division, Holden, launched its all-new Commodore in July, the first vehicle based on GM's rear-drive Zeta architecture to go into production. The Commodore has been Australia's biggest-selling car for the past decade, but Holden is increasingly relying on exports to ensure that local production of its large sedan remains viable.

The car Holden proposes as the next Grand Prix is based on the new Holden Commodore SS-V, which is powered by GM's new 6.0-liter Vortec V-8 with 362 horses and 390 pound-feet of torque, available with six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions and running on 19-inch wheels. Holden shipped a Commodore SS-V, the performance flagship of the new Holden range, to Detroit for a strategy board meeting with high-level GM executives in early August.

The American boss of Holden, Denny Mooney, told Australian media at the launch of the new Commodore that Holden could help with GM's plans to take Pontiac all rear-drive. "I think if you talk to anyone at Pontiac, he'd tell you he'd love a rear-drive performance Grand Prix. The SS-V would make a great Pontiac. But I'm not going to oversell this thing. We're going to send these cars over there and let them speak for themselves."

The SS-V will be driven by GM chairman Rick Wagoner and global product chief Bob Lutz, among others. They also will drive a luxury, long-wheelbase version of the Commodore, sold as a Holden Caprice in Australia. Holden had planned to export the new Caprice to the U.S. as a Buick (the design and engineering were finalized more than a year ago), but those plans were scrapped when GM focused its energy toward a new range of SUVs in North America.

Holden hasn't given up hope of exporting the Holden Caprice to the U.S., but it may now not be sold as a Buick. In Australia, the Caprice, which rolls on a 118.5-inch wheelbase--some 4.0 inches longer than the standard Commodore--is available with a 261-horse version of the 3.6-liter high-feature V-6 as well as the 362-horse V-8. Standard transmission is GM's new 6L80E six-speed automatic, also used in the Cadillac STS and C6 Corvette
 

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Imagine. All of those nit-wits in Detroit -- and the only interesting automobiles GM makes, outside of the specialty Corvette -- come from Australia.
 

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Imagine. All of those nit-wits in Detroit -- and the only interesting automobiles GM makes, outside of the specialty Corvette -- come from Australia.

+1. Sad, innit?

They need to drop the Grand Prix name as well...way too many negative connotations.

Hell, I can't even say it without laughing.

While they're at it...even after two years of owning my rebadged Holden, Pontiac elicits a chuckle as well. Just sell them a frikken Holdens already! Dump the baggage!
 

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Went to the San Francisco Auto Show last week. Absolutely nobody in any of the GM booths. Meanwhile, the BMW, Lexus, Toyota, Honda, Porsche and Mercedes booths looked like a bunch of college students packing into a phone booth.

GM should turf Pontiac and Buick -- and convert Pontiac/Buick/GMC dealerships to Holden/GMC ones. Stand alone Chevy stores are OK. Cadillac and Hummer should be combined. Flush Saturn -- as the new Aura and whatever their new CUV is have both arrived DOA (the bean counters got 'em). Saab stores could become GM import ones, where neat stuff from Vauxhall (VXRs) and Opel (Speedster) are sold along with the Swedish stuff.

But, noooooo. GMNA, fresh off of completely blowing the Monaro/GTO in the US -- are going to "stay the course" by reviving a brand that nobody has the courage to admit is as dead as Oldsmobile. If I worked at GM, I would probably go postal after a week.
 

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Problem is GM is a public company. The car people don't get their way, the bean counters do. That's why Ford is buying everyone out to go private again so they can control their own destiny. It's hard to compete with countries when your own government ties your hands behind your back. Honda et al aren't car companies they're Corporate Nippon and wonder why the tariff for American iron is over 60% in Japan, in the uS it's 3-5% tops. Even with all that Chevy has a pretty good line up. I aggree with flushing Buick though, should've kept Olds.
 

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It's hard to compete with countries when your own government ties your hands behind your back. Honda et al aren't car companies they're Corporate Nippon and wonder why the tariff for American iron is over 60% in Japan, in the uS it's 3-5% tops.
Wow. Nice cop out.

Irrelevant, but you gotta love the attempt.
 

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The GTO is the only Pontiac I would ever buy. I've hated all the other one's they make. I didn't care for the GTO at first till I sat inside, wow, I couldn't believe how it compared to my Bimmer. Then I heard it was made by Holden and it all made sense again. Pontiac couldn't make a good car with the people there. I say bring all that they can over here and dump some of these small crappy companies. Just don't try to slap GTO or anything on the name. They need their own names.
 

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The GTO is the only Pontiac I would ever buy. I've hated all the other one's they make. I didn't care for the GTO at first till I sat inside, wow, I couldn't believe how it compared to my Bimmer. Then I heard it was made by Holden and it all made sense again. Pontiac couldn't make a good car with the people there. I say bring all that they can over here and dump some of these small crappy companies. Just don't try to slap GTO or anything on the name. They need their own names.
As an unrepentant Bimmerhead, I concur %100.
 

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its an ss-v? the plain old ss is faster/cheaper, less weight from all the extra electrical crap you never use.
but hey, more equipment is good for bragging i spose:cheers
 

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Wow, kinda looks like a Grand-Am on Steriods No, wait. It kinda looks like a Cavalier. No, wait. It kinda looks like a Grand-Prix.. Wait, that's what it is.
But the more I look at it, it looks like a GTO with a Monaro front and 4 doors. I am really confused. Is this a GTO, or a Grand-Prix or a Cavalier, or Grand-Am? A little of all?

hmmmmmmm :confused :confused

Isn't this the reaction Pontiac got when the 04' GTO was introduced?

Dejavu... isn't a GTO in that movie?

I do wonder if that front will fit a GTO.
 

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I like that el'camino-ish thing they sell over there.
 

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front will not fit a gto..... yet, but i know a company already trying its called the spoiler factory and i think they export to the us!?
el camino thing (ss holden ute/hsv maloo ute) is a sweet machine.... but does not drive in a straight line due too v8 rear wheel drive and no weight over the back wheels.... ive had the pleasure:D
 

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Imagine. All of those nit-wits in Detroit -- and the only interesting automobiles GM makes, outside of the specialty Corvette -- come from Australia.
I'd disargree. The new Sky/Sky Redline. The Cadillac's (not to mention the '08 CTS and CTS-V with 550 or so HP...) The new Lambda large crossovers (Buick Enclave, Saturn Outlook, etc.) And that's just the begining. Granted, these are all new vehicles (and, might I add that, for its time, the previous gen CTS, the XLR, SRX, and the Escalade all kicked some serious ass, too!) How about the new GMT-900 full-size SUV's and trucks, too?

Then you go to the countries outside NA, and they've got some serious butt-kicking vehicles!
 

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I'd disargree. The new Sky/Sky Redline. The Cadillac's (not to mention the '08 CTS and CTS-V with 550 or so HP...) The new Lambda large crossovers (Buick Enclave, Saturn Outlook, etc.) And that's just the begining. Granted, these are all new vehicles (and, might I add that, for its time, the previous gen CTS, the XLR, SRX, and the Escalade all kicked some serious ass, too!) How about the new GMT-900 full-size SUV's and trucks, too?
I'll grant you the CTS-V.

Not on the rest. SUVs = Yawn.
 

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I'd disargree. The new Sky/Sky Redline. The Cadillac's (not to mention the '08 CTS and CTS-V with 550 or so HP...) The new Lambda large crossovers (Buick Enclave, Saturn Outlook, etc.) And that's just the begining. Granted, these are all new vehicles (and, might I add that, for its time, the previous gen CTS, the XLR, SRX, and the Escalade all kicked some serious ass, too!) How about the new GMT-900 full-size SUV's and trucks, too?

Then you go to the countries outside NA, and they've got some serious butt-kicking vehicles!
New Sky -- nothing special. 08 CTS -- this is 06 -- and we're coming up on 07 -- and GM has a bad habit of turning cool concepts like the Aura into crap before it hits the showrooms. Have you seen the Outlook, Acadia and Enclave yet? I've seen two out of the three -- and they stink. Big, bulbous tubs that don't go far enough to capture BMW, Lexus, Toyota and Honda buyers. Seriously? The products are minivans in "Crossover Utility Vehicle" clothing, whatever that is. The pickups? Sure they're nice -- but the ones one the floor were stickering from $33K to $43K -- and still get ridiculous gas mileage.

I'm not one of those people who goes around badmouthing domestic product. In fact, if you search my posts -- I'm a huge supporter of GM and Ford. However, GMNA has the Tidy Bowl touch -- in that they can take an awesome car like the Holden Monaro and completely turn its appeal to crap by fooling around with the styling and turning it into a Pontiac GTO -- just so a bunch of bozos who never had any intention of buying it could say "duh, where are the hood scoops? Duh, this doesn't look like a GTO." And now they're going to do it with the Holden Commodore Sedan by turning it into a Grand Prix.

GM has lost half of its market share over the past couple of generations. It's still sinking. Out here in California, all of GM's brands hold less than something like 15% market share. Sure, they've got new product coming -- and I hope they all do great -- but based from what I've seen -- it ain't going to happen, because they've got too many "team players" and not enough people who just want to build great, great cars and that's a shame.
 

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The Sky is nothing special? Have you even seen one in person? Pics, it's just meh... in person, the car is BEAUTIFUL. And you wouldn't believe how many people are coming in with $80K BMW's trying to buy their way ahead of a 1-year waitlist and thinking it's a $60K vehicle when it's $25K base. The Redline, 2 year waitlist.

And I personally think the Outlook/etc are awesome looking. And for trucks/SUV's, the GMT-900's are pretty kick-ass IMO. The Aura, like the Sky, looks meh in pics, but in person is very good looking. Add to that how outstanding of a driver it is - it drives similar to an Audi/BMW in the sporty section while still being comfortable.

The new products GM is bringing out IMO are pretty awesome. Now if only they'd do what they did to Cadillac and doing to Saturn to the rest of the brands, GM would be well on their way to recovery. Actually, they've already started turning the company around.
 

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The sky is a knock off of The Solstice. GM is running out of ideas so they are in the process of creating the same cars under different names.

Example... Chevy Cobolt. An inexpensive car that was selling fairly well. Not a bad car for the buck. Soooooooo, GM creates the Pontiac G5. Same car different badge and a few subtle changes.

The Sky... is from the Pontiac Solstice. Again, same car different badge and a few subtle changes.

Granted GM has done it in the past but now a days damn near every car on the road looks a like.


IMO .... The Saturn line is GM's cheaper version of autos designed to give people a new car for a cheap price. I think of it as GM's version of Hyundai. Give em a cheap car at a decent price, cheap sells. Never been impressed with Saturn. I think the Vue is ridiculous. Get behind one once. Where are your eyes drawn? To the huge muffler below the bumper. No attempt to hide it. It's cheap. The more people lean towards cheap, the cheaper the crap will get. Ya get what ya pay for.

Gone are the days when you can look down the road and tell your buddy what's coming. Half the time ya can't tell from a distance if the car coming at you is a GM, or a foreign car. The current designers are out of ideas. Bubble cars, and boxy looking "things" are pathetic. The new generation of designers grew up in front of a play station, and funny how the cars you see on the road are coming from funky looking cars in video games. But then again the new generation mostly knows video games.



 

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The Sky is nothing special? Have you even seen one in person?.
Yes, I've seen it in person. It's nothing special. Besides, it's a low volume specialty car. It's nothing like a bread and butter sedan like a Camry or Accord that will build volume and market share.

Understand your enthusiasm for GM -- I'm just not sold on it. The Aura concept I saw last year was totally cool. I wanted to buy one. But GM, as it always does, killed off the fender flares, the big wheels and tires and nicest interior features -- and turned it into just another car that people won't even notice on their way to the BMW, Lexus, Honda and Toyota stores.
 

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Sky is isnteresting (especially in comparison with the boring Solstice), but under the flash is an Ecotec mill spinning through an Aisin truck gearbox from a Chevy Colorado.

Phooey.

Besides, any enthusiasm I get from GM products (few and far between, unfortunately) is always tempered by my repeated experience with their untrained, poorly informed, barely competent service departments.
 
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