Vale Malcolm Fraser

MALCOM Fraser, the former Liberal prime minister who ramped up protection of the Australian car industry in the late 1970s to early '80s, has died aged 84.

An avid Wheels subscriber since his introduction to the prime minister's office from 1975-83, Mr Fraser used his influence to ramp up import tariffs and increase quotas for car manufacturing.

In an interview with Wheels early last year, Mr Fraser spoke of how he used the magazine to keep up to date with what was happening in the automotive world.

He also featured in two Wheels stories, taking up the role of road tester for the new locally made Ford LTD in 1976, and again in 2008 where, 32 years after reviewing the original, he farewelled the LTD's little brother, the Fairlane.

Watch as Mr Fraser recounts his years steering the burgeoning Australian car industry.

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