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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-23-04, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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Torana @ SMS?!

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Hot stuff: The 'Torana' concept sits on GM's RWD Kappa architecture, first used with the 2006 Pontiac Solstice chassis shown here.

Holden to reveal its take on a BMW 3 Series beater

By BRUCE NEWTON in France 22 September 2004

THE Torana will be reborn in spirit when Holden reveals a compact sedan concept car at next month’s Australian International Motor Show in Sydney.

And the car is being touted as a potential BMW fighter globally by no less than General Motors' product czar Bob Lutz.

Mr Lutz viewed a clay rendition of the concept during his visit to Australia last February and immediately backed Holden plans to produce a running prototype for Sydney.

Others who viewed the clay and gave it the thumbs-up included global engineering chief Jim Queen and global design boss Ed Welburn.

But it is unknown whether it will be called Torana, in honour of the compact LH-UC range that was manufactured locally between 1974 and 1979.

That will no doubt be subjected to heavy debate, just as reviving Monaro for the Commodore Coupe was several years ago.

The concept car is expected to be powered by a twin-turbo version of the new Port Melbourne-built Alloytec V6 engine.

That engine configuration is an obvious pointer to a planned production turbo Alloytec that should be used in the 2006 VE Commodore and take on the Ford Falcon XR6 Turbo.

But a production version of the concept would more likely have 2.2-litre normally-aspirated and turbocharged four-cylinder engines, and possibly a V6, according to GoAuto sources in the US.

The concept will sit on GM’s low-volume rear-wheel drive Kappa architecture, which has so far yielded one production model, the Pontiac Solstice.

This in itself is a significant advertisement for Holden’s engineering skill because up until this point Kappa had only been used for left-hand drive four-cylinder vehicles such as the Pontiac Solstice roadster.

"I encouraged that (Holden concept) direction because I think the corporation could use a BMW 1 Series equivalent," Mr Lutz told GoAuto in an exclusive interview during GM’s global product seminar in southern France this week.

"From a communications standpoint, the only thing that bothers me a little bit is we said Kappa was optimised around four-cylinder engines and you couldn’t put a V6 engine into it, which of course was just a challenge to the Australians."

Mr Lutz agreed the concept could form the basis for a new medium rear-wheel drive architecture that Holden would develop for the GM world, along the same lines as the Zeta large and long wheelbase architecture.

"Of course it could," he said. "Almost anything Holden does has potential international applicability because they work it that way.

"And yes, if that thing really touches a nerve at the Sydney show and gets a lot of international attention, and we get a lot of people saying ‘oh why don’t you do that’, then we’ll take a look at it.

"Back in the old days Holden would have had to do the business case locally, how many do they sell in Australia? The change is that now you do the worldwide business study.

"And if Holden can say ‘hey we can sell 120,000 of these globally’, where for the US it might be modified and become a Pontiac, hey that’s fine."

While Mr Lutz described the Holden concept as a 1 Series fighter initially, he revised that to describing it as more of a '2 Series' sized vehicle, which suggests something close to the size of the current 3 Series.

The BMW comparison is apt, because this project originally emerged from the fertile mind of former Holden managing director Peter Hanenberger, who wanted Holden to develop a sub-Commodore sized RWD sedan powered by four and six-cylinder engines capable of taking on BMW’s iconic 3 Series.

He also saw it as a great way for Holden to penetrate export markets – particularly in Asia – where Commodore’s size prohibited significant sales.

Mr Hanenberger’s dream foundered because the original plan to develop the car on a cut-down version of the Zeta architecture was not financially viable.

Mr Hanenberger and then Holden design director Mike Simcoe sponsored the development of a clay model of the car at a skunkworks within HSV’s Clayton (Melbourne) headquarters.

Current Holden boss Denny Mooney is believed to be an enthusiastic supporter of the concept.

Even if it ran an engineering program for a production version of the concept, Holden would almost certainly not build such a car itself because it has its hands full preparing the Elizabeth assembly plant for the arrival of the Zeta-based VE Commodore in 2006.

Currently, all Kappa-based production comes out of GM’s Wilmington, Delaware, plant.

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-23-04, 05:49 PM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

I hope it's produced and SHITS all over the BMW 3 Series
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-23-04, 06:32 PM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!


A Holden badged, Daewoo built, 3 series competitor....

Yep, the yuppies will be queuing up for that one!!

I would have thought Holden and learnt its lesson about being a BMW alternative already, does anyone remeber the price drops on Vectra (3 series alternative) and Adventra (the X5 alternative)??

It's also interesting that the Torana would be built on the kappa platform which is more MX5 sized than a 4 seater. Hell, even in the pic the rear wheels are immediately behind the "drivers door".......

So in essence the new Torana will be a Holden Badged, Daewoo Built, 2 seater

They're onto a winner....not!!

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-23-04, 06:57 PM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

This thing would FLY with a V8 in it. Or a TT V6, or even a single T-V6!

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-23-04, 08:02 PM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

decent sized rims in that last picture :)

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-24-04, 04:23 AM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

Why are Holden so damn good at this!

This'll be the hit of the Motor Show and all they have had to do so far is steal the Pontiac Soltice platform and place a 70's Torana ad behind it.

See if the above image looks like any on this page;

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-24-04, 08:31 AM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

Originally Posted by Pearly
I hope it's produced and SHITS all over the BMW 3 Series
I don't think you will ever see an Australian made or Australian designed car ever be as good as a German made or German designed car. They're just that many steps ahead of the rest of the planet. Even the highest quality Australian manufactured car, and the current best, BA Falcon, pales in comparison to its German competition (E-Class, 5-Series, A6).

Holden better think this one through. They shouldn't go out and destroy the Torana name like they did with Monaro. Wouldn't be too wise.

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-25-04, 01:34 AM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

Yep, another great aussie muscle car name ruined.

At least ford aren't so willing to slap GT-HO on something, if it were Holden I'm sure they would of just upped the GT's output to 310 kw and slapped HO badges all over it.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-25-04, 01:38 AM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

GTS300 has lived up to the old GTS327 and GTS350 badges quite well. In fact, it's done a better job then those cars ever did, its totally overhsadowed everything Ford has done since it's release. The old GTS327s and GTS350s never did that.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 09-25-04, 07:32 AM
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Re: Torana @ SMS?!

i hope they make and release a torana here, i know someone who owns the number plate ''TORANA'' it would be worth a good dollar on a new one...
i was told that the plate MONARO went for $50,000 when the car was released


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