Welcome to issue No. 126
VE day is rapidly approaching - VE Commodore, that is. In a climate of falling sales for full size family cars, this is a critical launch for GM Holden. As this issue goes on sale, the motoring press will have had their first official up-close-and-personal look at the new model range in Melbourne. In early August we will have driven all the models after an extensive two day launch program - again centred in Victoria. While there is no shortage of spy photos of the new cars undergoing testing around Australia, we can say that the model line up is changed from that of the current VZ Commodore. The entry level range (currently called Executive and Acclaim) is now called Omega. There's also a luxury and sports variant family. It is at this level that the new SS-V performance model will surely be every boy's dream. Featuring a 6.0-litre V8 matched to a new six-speed transmission, this baby should really rock! Of course, at the rear there will be no mistaking the SS-V with four pipes being its signature. Visit the spy websites for further details if you can't wait. The VE will certainly raise the Holden vs Ford battle another notch, with the BF Falcon the current winner by a small margin.
Speaking of Holden, it was great to see company representatives and the Early Model Holden Club of Victoria get together outside Holden headquarters to park their beloved FX and FJ vehicles alongside Holden's 21st century hot rod reincarnation, the EFIJY custom coupe. EFIJY was designed to pay homage to the original FJ Holden released in 1953 adding custom cool, V8 supercar power and leading edge technology into the mix. The guys from the Club appreciated talking to the cars designer, Richard Ferlazzo and all up this was a great gesture by Holden.
Car Clubs play a fantastic role in maintaining, preserving and bringing respect to cars of bygone eras. There isn't enough praise we can heap on the devotion of their members and the money they spend doing up their cars.
At a recent launch in Queensland for the PT Cruiser Cabrio, our morning tea stop was at Alexandra Headlands and DaimlerChrysler had arranged for the local PT Cruiser Club to be on hand to welcome the press contingent. There was an exceptional roll up of local PT Cruisers, many the likes of which has never been offered in any Chrysler showroom! One owner had spent $20,000 alone on a custom paint job, while another had created an ingenious drop tailgate.
We receive a number of Car Club newsletters in our offices, and I take this opportunity to thank the clubs for sending them. Occasionally we pick a coming event and give it a plug, but if you want your club or event noticed, take advantage of the Events Listings and Club Notices in our classified section. I would encourage any owner of a custom or older car to join a car club, as they have so much to offer. Similarly it is great to receive stories of manufacturers working or assisting clubs, and this is really what it's all about. The motoring cult is all embracing and certainly no one section of the industry has a monopoly on it.
Finally this month - "DANNY STEPHENSON, WHERE ARE YOU??"
Danny was one of the winners of the great Speco Meter gauges from our April issue, but since sending his entry in, 'ol Dan has dropped off the radar. So Danny, if you're reading, please get in touch with us on (03) 5272 1221 and confirm your
contact details so we can get your Speco Meter prize out to you!
Have a great month...