OUTSPOKEN Holden Special Vehicles
boss John Crennan has warned Ford is
undermining the viability of its hot cars
division, Ford Performance Vehicles, with its
strong focus on six-cylinder engines.
Speaking at last week’s launch of the
HSV Coupe 4, Mr Crennan claimed the XR6
Turbo was damaging FPV’s core business
– selling high-powered V8 Falcons – and
that FPV’s 2004 sales decline was due solely
to the turbo six.
In the latest pot-shot fired between the two
rival performance houses, Mr Crennan also
said FPV’s plans to sell a hyped-up version
of the XR6T called the F6 Typhoon from
November would further hurt the company’s
“The cake is only so big. And I could
be wrong, but I think it (F6) will put a lot
of pressure … on their GT and GT-P when
you look at their sales and see that this year
they’ve fallen back dramatically,” he said.
“Our major competitor – if I can be so
generous as to rate them that way – last year
started out well but the graphs have dropped
dramatically this year. So whether they just
filled a void for a while, I don’t know.”
Mr Crennan produced his startling view of Ford
and FPV’s sports market strategy while being
quizzed about the chances of re-entering the hot
six market now that Holden has launched the new
That car will be sold in both 175kW and 190kW
forms and there is capability for turbocharging.
Nevertheless, Mr Crennan shied away from any
suggestion HSV would re-enter a market it was last
in with the ill-fated XU-6.
“It (XU-6) didn’t do much. And I really find the
Ford business case interesting,” he said.
“They’re doing obviously a fabulous job with
their turbo (XR6). Last year they launched FPV in
March, they really only got cars on stream I suppose
around about May and between May and December
with GT and GT-P and Pursuit, they got up to 190
cars a month. They were also doing a spectacular
job on the six-cylinder turbo and I thought ‘Isn’t it
interesting – there may be room for all’.
“Since then they’ve sustained their volume on
turbo six, but V8 has dropped to hell.
“In other words, can your brand do everything
– can it have an outstanding six-cylinder product
that’s maximising its potential, then at the same
time can you do exactly the same with your V8
“And the way I’m leaning with the Ford business
case, which we’re looking at very closely, is that it
was good while the GT thing was fresh and new,
but it’s dropped and you’re throwing a lot of action
at the market – incentives, etcetera – to get that
“So if we had the choice of being able to say
we want to continue to be able to do 4000 to 4500
V8s (per annum) and compromise that by putting
in something that was pretty slick in the six, then
Mr Crennan was emphatic in his assertion HSV
would not develop another six-cylinder model in
“I put my hand on my heart when I say we do not
have anything in our business plan today that says
we’ll take the high-feature V6 and do something
with it,” he said.
Instead, Mr Crennan believes HSV has untapped
opportunities in the aftermarket area, using the
Alloytec V6 as one possible avenue.
“Since the emergence of our business we’ve
seen an enormous growth in other people, oneman-
bands, doing an HSV sort of thing in an
unsophisticated aftermarket manner and there’s
been big growth in that,” he said.
“And I suppose we’ve said to ourselves, ‘Do we
just continue to allow that to happen or do we get in
there?’ We certainly don’t want to remove the purist
nature of the HSV brand but as a company we are
certainly looking at some aftermarket or tuning
programs and I’m not dismissing the potential to
look at the high-feature V6 on a tuning basis.
“But if you asked me if we’ve ticked a single box
in that business plan process, no we haven’t.”
Truly the deepest kiss one can feel, and the one most sought after, is the one you will not survive....
What an arrogant wanker. It will be interesting to see if Holden decide to turbo their new V6 in the future and how long it would be before HSV get their dirty little mits on it. He does have a bit of a point in regards to the sales of Ford's V8 sales unless figures show different.
Originally Posted by Sundeep
Eh Yagz, suck my left teste mate I'll have boost for $1k, even if it is only 1 pound.
As much as keeping the 8s on top is important i agree with David Flints comments from when F6 was shown about how FPV will use whatever they can to take HSV down. I hope we see 350kw GT's and a blown 400kwHO but untill then and untill FPV are selling what HSV sells i think Typhoon will be the vehicle that will more than match a HSV and outhandle a front heavy GT and for less $. I think he is running a little scared myself. If FPV sales have dropped that much i would put it down to them not having a tickle for a couple of years compared to HSVs which have already had one big one and another very soon. XR6s have always outsold the Ford 8s so theres nothing new there the only difference is these ones worry him a bit more.
He seems to speak the truth, from a executive/management perspective your relalistic target market is only so big..It is even obvious from just reading threads here how many customers and even more so potential customers FPV have lost, and stand to lose in the near future..
Add to that the issues FPV seem to be having with quality control and the overal standard of the product they are offering to Fords' 'elite' customers it is no wonder HSV have survived the issues they had and are again selling very well to their die hards, certainly the lack of another in house option performance line has helped HSV immensely..
THe whole thing is good for Ford bad for FPV, but who cares really, it is all still money in the bank.. wether they sell GT or XR6T's people are buying Blue Ovals and hopefully not a HSV...HSV mightn't be worried as Ford continue to rival each other (it is great for us comsumers) but i am sure overal Holden would be..
That is what he is saying, XR6T's are not FPV's which are HSV's direct competition.
By making another side market of cars that do not portrait Ford's customer view of top market vehicles, they are eating into their own slice of the cake, not HSV's.
By the same token the GT and GTP owners should be worried as the F6 will easily out perform them, at its current standings.
The idea is suposed to be to take sales away from HSV, not to try to build one car that will out do HSV in performance, Ford need to back up their entire FPV range if they wish to do this.
Interesting comments. I wonder if the rumoured turbo V6 will be a Holden or HSV badged vehicle? If it is released as a Holden V6T then he may find himself in the same position, with buyers grabbing the V6T over the Clubbie.
Also I wonder if FPV V8 sales have dropped in part due to the customer rush to buy a new release vehicle and also lease cycles, in that most leases run for 2-3 years and early adopters would still be heading into the start of their second year.
"To be afraid is to be alive - to act against that fear is to be a person of courage."
I have heard from the Garrett empire that Holden officials have been talking with Garrett to supply them with Turbo's. I believe that Holden will deffinately have a V6T, it's just a matter of when and not if.
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