HSV will unveil the plans for its future tonight with what appears to be a modified Holden Colorado – but a Victorian Government announcement provides a vital clue as to what its post-Holden Commodore future will look like.
The state’s Minister for Industry and Employment, Ben Carroll, used a visit to Holden Special Vehicles’ soon-to-close Clayton factory – the workshop is currently moving to a new site nearby – to announce that 16 businesses “impacted by the closure of automotive manufacturing” would share in $662,000 worth of government grants.
“Assistance through the program has enabled Holden Special Vehicles, an automotive design and engineering business, to look at diversifying its vehicle lines through expansion into the modification of imported vehicles,” the release said.
“Through the Automotive Supply Chain Transition Program, we are helping companies like Holden Special Vehicles identify future markets, plan for transition and ensure their workforce is sustainable,” Carroll said.
Under the terms of the program, HSV would have been eligible for up to $16,000 to develop a transition plan, and an extra $55,000 to implement the changes, the government said.
The money comes from the Automotive Supply Chain Transition Program, a fund set up to help businesses diversify beyond the closure of Ford, Holden and Toyota’s manufacturing shutdowns.
HSV’s future is believed to be tied up in modifying existing Holden products to enhance their performance, although a heavily modified version of the Holden Colorado featuring a 300kW-plus 3.6-litre twin-turbo V6 will wear the badge of HSV’s licence holder, Walkinshaw.
The funding also suggests the HSV-badged version could feature fewer engine and performance modifications than its Walkinshaw cousin, and potentially use either an atmo V6 or a tweaked version of the current Colorado’s 2.8-litre four-cylinder diesel engine.
As well, HSV is expected to convert versions of the Chevrolet Camaro to right-hand drive for the Australian market.