Sprung: Leaked images hint at 2018 Holden Commodore VXR?

Sprung: Leaked images hint at 2018 Holden Commodore VXR?

MORE images of what could shape up to be the most powerful post-V8 Holden Commodore have leaked online, giving a tantalising hint at how the range-topping 231kW, all-wheel-drive liftback will square up.

Pictures of a Chinese market Buick Regal GS have rolled out on a Russian website showing aggressive aero modifications, gulping air intakes, low-profile Continental rubber and bright red brake calipers fitted to a version of the car destined to be sold here as the 2018 Holden Commodore.

They closely match a set of images leaked onto a Chinese website in April that also show a hi-po version of the D2XX-based hatchback will gain a subtle boot lip spoiler and parallelogram-style exhaust tips.

If it lands here, though, the stove-hot, V6-engined and all-wheel-drive Commodore will potentially wear a “VXR” badge, driving a wedge between it and the “SS” and “SSV” badges that have historically linked to V8 engines. Those latter two badges are likely to retire once local Commodore manufacturing ends in October.

Holden was contacted for comment on whether the Chinese car could also hint at a performance bent at the top of the Commodore tree, but is yet to respond. So far, the only V6 engine Holden has confirmed for the new Opel Insignia-based Commodore is an atmo version of the fourth-generation 3.6-litre LGX, with the Aussie version using a similar 231kW/336Nm tune to the engines that power Cadillac’s SUV line-up.

However, there’s another tune of that engine, used in Cadillac’s passenger cars that will make a mouthwatering 250kW/386Nm. That engine could backfill a more performance-oriented, possibly OPC-badged model.

Holden has confirmed an as-yet unnamed V6 version of the Commodore will pair with Opel’s Ford Focus RS-like “Twinster” all-wheel-drive system that can be tuned to provide rear-drive feel – important for a vehicle that will replace the current rear-driven car.

More basic versions of the Commodore will use either a 2.0-litre turbo petrol or diesel engine mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission.

Holden has released few details of how its 2018 Holden Commodore range will stack up in the showroom, so far only confirming that the Calais badge will live on into the brand’s post-manufacturing future. It will also sell a Sportwagon version of the Commodore alongside the five-door sedan, and an SUV-styled Tourer wagon.

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