HSV GTSR W1 is Last of the V8 Annihilators
Watching the Australian auto industry die its slow motion death has been painful to watch even from here on the other side of the planet. For the last 40 or so years the car biz down under has resembled an alternate universe version of the one here in the U.S., where rear-wheel-drive family sedans with optional V8s and passenger cars with truck beds grafted onto the back never really went away…at least until globalization, a shrinking new vehicle market and changing consumer tastes teamed up to torpedo this Rod-Serling-narration-worthy motoring landscape, that is. But before the land of boomerangs, vegemite and tens thousands of animal species that will kill you absolutely dead gives up market-specific models for good, the in-house tuning arm of GM’s Holden division, HSV, is going anything-but-gently into that good night.
The HSV GTSR W1, like all HSV products of the last few years, is based on the VF Series II Holden Commodore. However, the W1 takes everything leadfooted antipodeans love about current generation HSVs and turns those attributes up to 11…or maybe 12. The bold (but not quite over-the-top, if you ask us) exterior wraps a motorsports-bred suspension system with adjustable SupaShock dampers and a set of huge AP Racing brakes, with a 6.2L supercharged LS9 V8 making 636 horsepower and 601 lb.-ft of torque (both figures being just an itty-bitty bit less than what the same engine produced in the C6 Corvette ZR1) and a close-ratio 6-speed manual transmission delivering the forward thrust. And HSV says there’s enough thrust to dropkick this four-door supercar to 62 mph in 4.2 seconds, through the standing quarter-mile in 12.1 seconds, and onward to an electronically-limited 155 mph top speed.
Just 300 of these beasts will be made for the Australia and New Zealand markets. As much as we’d like to tell you a few will be making their way here with left-hand drive and Chevrolet badges as a last-hurrah “super” version of the Chevrolet SS like was rumored a while ago, we can’t. Then again, based on the GTSR W1’s MSRP of about $130,000 American, Chevy dealers would have an even tougher time selling it than they do the regular SS. Oh well…