Late last year Holden released initial details of the fully-imported NG (Next Generation) Commodore ahead of its Australian launch in early 2018. In an interesting move, journalists have been provided with an extensive array of details much of them under strict embargo.

It comes as no surprise that the big emphasis of the latest release is on the hot Commodore VXR flagship. It will come with a V6 engine putting out 235 kilowatts of power and 381 Newton metres of torque through a nine-speed automatic transmission to an all-wheel-drive system. Adaptive suspension technology and torque-vectoring will further add to the dynamics of the AWD system.

Jeremy Tassone, Holden’s engineering group manager for vehicle development, tells us, “We’ve had our Holden engineers engaged in this global program from the outset and we’re continuing to do extensive tuning and development, racking up thousands of kilometres at our Lang Lang proving ground in Victoria to ensure it’s got that Holden magic.

“While it may not be built here, we’ll deliver a high-performance Commodore that our customers will love in 2018”

Commodore VXR has Brembo front brakes and the ability for drivers to switch between driving modes. Adjustable settings include Continuous Damping Control (CDC), steering, transmission and an adaptive AWD system.


Lead dynamics engineer, Rob Trubiani, says. “We’ve been involved in the development of this car from the beginning and I personally have spent significant time behind the wheel overseas and at Holden’s Lang Lang proving ground.

“The V6 engine with the adaptive AWD and 9-speed transmission make the VXR a quick and smooth car to drive, even in wet conditions.

“We can’t wait to get the car in the hands of our customers next year but for now, we’ve still got some work to do and will continue to work with the team in Europe, who are currently completing chassis development at Nurburgring in Germany.”

Next-generation Commodore VXR has bespoke 20-inch alloy wheels, a larger rear spoiler, front and rear sports fascias and premium VXR sill plates.


Other highlights include adaptive LED Matrix headlights, heated and ventilated leather performance front seats, and a wealth of cutting-edge driver assistance technology.

The next-generation Commodore VXR will be on sale alongside the rest of the sedan range, along with Sportwagon and hatchback Tourer body styles, in early 2018.

In hindsight we may well have seen an NG Commodore VXR in action at Holden’s Lang Lang proving ground two days ago when we were there for preliminary test drives of the upcoming Equinox and Acadia SUVs. There was certainly an NG passing by on not too distant roads at the time, but we weren’t close enough to see through its disguise overlays or hear the exhaust note.

Nice one to sneak it past us, Mr Holden…

About Ewan Kennedy

Ewan Kennedy, a long-time car enthusiast, was Technical Research Librarian with the NRMA from 1970 until 1985. He worked part-time as a freelance motoring journalist from 1977 until 1985, when he took a full-time position as Technical Editor with Modern Motor magazine. Late in 1987 he left to set up a full-time business as a freelance motoring journalist. Ewan is an associate member of the Society of Automotive Engineers - International. An economy driving expert, he set the Guinness World Record for the greatest distance travelled in a standard road vehicle on a single fuel fill. He lists his hobbies as stage acting, travelling, boating and reading.
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