Ok so there’s more theories running around about the future of Holden’s manufacturing then there is about who shot JFK, I’ve heard many stories, been told qiuet a few things. None of these I am actually going to talk about right now as I don’t have 100% proof of whether each story is correct once the truth comes out then I will actually say something until then my lips are sealed.
What did get me to thinking was, despite all the doom and gloom talk what will be the next step for Holden if GM decides to keep making cars in the this country(fingers crossed they do).
Holden has proven themselves over the years to be one of GM’s best if not GM’s best factory when it’s comes to putting together RWD performance sedans, Holden has an extremely talented bunch of designers and engineers that really know what it takes to take a car from an idea to actually being put together by the skilful work force at the Elizabeth factory in Adelaide.
Holden being a smaller factory compared to others in the GM empire does have one advantage, being able to build more then one platform at the same time look at the video’s on youtube showing Holden’s assembly line and you see one thing you don’t at others and that’s all these different cars coming down the line Commodore sedans, ute’s and sportwagons, Cruze sedan’s and hatches, LWB Caprice luxury sedans, Chevy Caprice PPV’s, Chevy SS sedan’s. Add to that different engine combinations from 4 cylinder engines, V6 engines and whooping great V8’s, engines that run on unleaded fuel, E85 fuel, LPG.
What that all points to, to me is that Holden has a very versatile assembly operation which brings me back to the topic of this blog What’s Next For Holden if Holden continues to build cars here could it’s versatility be used to set itself up as a niche manufacturer providing different GM markets and brands around the world niche vehicles that would prove to be to cost ineffective to make at other bigger plants.
Holden has just started exports of the Chevy SS sedan to the U.S. and from what I’ve been reading so far a getting rave reviews from the owners, given that Chevy are only looking at small scale sales numbers of 3000 a year, could this lead to other Commodore models going to the U.S. as well, I have quite a few friends and relatives in the U.S. and quite a few of them have said they would be really interested if the Holden Ute was exported to the U.S. as well.
The high Australian dollar over the last couple of years has really been a huge pain the you know what as far as making Holden export programs viable, as the dollar starts to drop this starts to make exports more attractive if the dollar continues to drop to levels that we had a few years ago at under $0.80 compared to the U.S. could this lead to the Chevy export program being expanded, could it open other export opportunities for Holden if they to come with a different vehicle.
Can Holden’s versatility be used to create a mid size rear wheel drive sedan not only for the Australian market but overseas markets as well, Holden teased the public with the Torana concept car a few years ago and I know lots of people have expressed interest in a new Torana if Holden made one.
Holden’s GM sister Chevrolet created massive amounts of interest at the 2012 North American Motorshow when it unveiled two stunning concept vehicles the rear wheel drive coupe the Code 130R and the front wheel drive TRU 140S hatch. Toyota and Subaru have proven how popular their 86/BRZ twins are and how well they were received on release could the Code 130R be GM’s chance to give the world something along the same lines Holden’s expertise with RWD cars could put them in good stead if were given the chance to produce a production version of the 130R.
The TRU 140S hatch has something in common with Holden from the start and that’s the fact it’s made on the same platform as the Cruze which means that it could be feasible for Holden to start making it. Those of you that have driven the MY14 Holden Cruze will know exactly how much experience and how good the Holden engineers are with that platform. Could this expertise and the fact we are making Cruzes in this country now give it a heads up in putting together a production version of the TRU 140S. Either one of these cars could give Holden’s Performance partner HSV a chance to expand its range range beyond the large V8 powered cars it makes now.
Right now GM and Holden are keeping their cards very close to their chests on whatever is going to happen with Holden’s future manufacturing operation anything I have mentioned here is just a product of my very fertile mind that wants to see Holden continue to make cars in Australia for many, many, many years to come.
I am waiting with baited breath like many other thousand and thousands of other people for the news to come out on What’s Next For Holden