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The Mercury Cars Guide : September 12th 2009
4--- Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au Saturday, September 12, 2009 Half billion dollar baby bedazzles The Pontiac G8 might be on death row but it has just passed on a valuable inheritance to Holden Special Vehicles. Paul Gover reports SPECTACULAR: The HSV VE Series 2 is very impressive. HSV chief Phil Harding welcomes the new look vehicles. THE aggressive double-scoop bonnet of the Pontiac G8, originally designed to cut through traffic in the US, has been transplanted to the second- generation VE models from HSV, pointing directly to a 325 kiloWatt V8 engine in the front-line GTS. It is part of a massive $500,000 model change that is almost the reverse of the low-key change for the regular VE Commodore, which has zero body changes but lots of engineering up- grades. HSV has also done a lot of tweaking, but and a lot more body jewellery to turn heads. Every E Series 2 manual comes with full-on, race-style 'launch control' and there are a range of other technical upgrades across the lineup that runs from a competition mode on the stability control to 19-inch E2 alloy wheels on the ClubSport and beyond. But it's the bonnet that cuts through for E2 and HSV chief Phil Harding is happy to defend the donation from the Pontiac program. ''We call it our performance bonnet. It's an HSV bonnet now,'' Harding says. ''Actually, we asked for this oppor- tunity over a year ago and at that stage no one knew the fate of the G8 or Pontiac. We wanted Julian to have it for the facelift. ''We like the look of it. ''It helps give a tougher look to the E2 lineup but Harding, an engineer, is more focused on the mechanical changes for the latest HSV lineup. ''When we launched E Series we called that our $1 billion baby. This E2 is our half-billion baby. This is the biggest facelift we've ever done,'' Harding says. ''We spent a huge amount on E Series and our sales went up 25 per cent in the first year. ''That approach worked and we decided to let the engineers loose to entice our customers three years later. ''I'm guessing the appearance changes are around 20 per cent of the total bill. The rest is in technology and that stuff is going down pretty well. ''He targets the 325 kiloWatt version of the LS3 V8 and the launch control system as the highlights for 2009. ''Why do 325? Because we can and because our customers want it. ''And they will probably tell us that it still isn't enough. ''But we've done the responsible thing and worked on fuel economy.'' Every E Series II is more efficient than a VY II manual clubsport. ''The extra kilowatts in the GTS have come from a re-calibration and a new lower-loss exhaust system, which points to a trickle-down to other models in future. ''As for launch control, I think this is a kinder way of treating the clutch. It's a repeatable thing and easy to use. And we're putting the 7 litre clutch into the manual models,'' he says. ''Apart from the model-by-model tweaking, the E2 models are also available with a new lineup of SV Enhanced options. ''They vary by model by generally including larger wheels, different ex- hausts and some cosmetic upgrades.'' The latest HSV cars hit showrooms this month but Harding is not making any big predictions because of the economic situation. ''We'll more than double our daily output with this range,'' he says. ''We'll still be down at the end of the year and I'm not sure how it will go. ''The market needs a kick. ''We have starved the market. ''I wanted the cleanest change-over and it's been the most successful since I've been here. ''At the moment we're trying to make one fewer car than is necessary, unlike the years when we've made one too many.'' MOTORS PTY LTD HOBART CNR COLLINS AND BARRACK ST HOBART 6230 7220 Conditions: All cars must be ordered and delivered between 1st and 30th September 2009. Offer valid at participating dealers on existing dealer stock while stocks last. Offers exclude fleet, rental and govt. buyers and vehicles used for commercial purposes. Hyundai reserves the right to change, supersede or extend these offers. The 5 Year/ unlimited kilometre warranty is only applicable to vehicles used for private and domestic use and is not applicable for vehicles used for certain high mileage commercial purposes i.e. courier, security and rental cars. 1. 2008 Australia's Best Mid Size Car under $28,000 awarded by Australia's Best Cars to i30 SX . 2. Most Economical Small Car to Own and Run 2009 awarded by RACT to i30 petrol. 3. 2009 RACT Operating Cost Survey for Getz 1.4 S. 4. 2009 RACT Operating Cost Survey for Tucson City. iPod® is a registered trademark of Apple Computer Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. Bluetooth® is a registered trademark of Bluetooth SIG, Inc. ^ADR 81/02 fuel consumption will vary depending on a combination of driving habits, road conditions and condition of vehicle. A) Campaign price for i30 SX hatch manual petrol. B) Campaign price for Getz 1.4, 3 door manual. C) Campaign price for Getz 1.4, 5 door manual. D) Campaign price for Tucson City SX manual. HMCA456/HPC/HM ALL BACKED BY AUSTRALIA'S FIRST 5 YEAR UNLIMITED KILOMETRE WARRANTY. * THAT'S OUR PROMISE TO YOU OF OUR OUTSTANDING QUALITY AND RELIABILITY. GETZ FROM $12,990B DRIVE AWAY >> 6.1L/100km^ >> Bluetooth® audio >> Immobiliser and alarm >> Remote keyless entry >> Power windows >> Full size spare wheel RACT 2009 MOST ECONOMICAL LIGHT CAR TO OWN AND RUN3 RACT 2009 MOST ECONOMICAL COMPACT SUV TO OWN AND RUN4 GETZ 5 DOOR FROM $13,990C DRIVE AWAY TUCSON FROM $22,990D DRIVE AWAY >> 2.0 CVVT Twin Cam engine >> 8.0L /100km^ >> ABS with EBD >> ESP Stability Control >> Traction Control >> Bluetooth® audio >> Full size spare wheel >> 16" alloys awardwinningcars.com or call 1800 186 306
September 5th 2009
September 19th 2009