If you’re going out, you may as well do it in a blaze of glory. That’s exactly what HSV have planned for their final Commodore-based model

It’s an unfortunate thing when you hear of a vehicle manufacturer biting the dust, as Holden and Ford have just recently done in Australia. It’s a shame, as they’re both huge parts of the automotive culture in the sun-drenched country. It’ll no doubt strengthen the enthusiast community, but waiting for the next model to be released is also extremely exciting. HSV aren't letting the Commodore platform go out without a fight, and that fight is coming from a fairly serious brawler that goes by the name of HSV GTS-R W1. 

Why so serious you ask? Well, this 2017 Commodore-based model will be like no other before, and it is said to pack a 6.2-litre supercharged LS9 V8 engine from the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. If you’re familiar with the fire-breathing, supercar-scaring ZR1, you’ll know it packs 638hp and 604lb·ft of torque. 

The ZR1 is said to be half a second quicker to get to 100kph, but four seconds is still extremely quick for a four-door sedan that is no doubt struggling for traction. Backing the LS9 will be a Tremec TR-6060 six-speed manual gearbox, which should keep the purists happy. Sorry, no automatic in this one fullas. 

Alongside the gnarly engine package, the GTS-R W1 will get a set of much tougher AP Racing calipers to slow the thing down, and Supashock dampers to ensure each rubber corner stands a chance at staying on earth in a solid form. 

As we haven’t seen images of the GTS-R W1 yet, we can only imagine it’ll be yellow and feature much angrier bodylines than the rest of the current HSV range, much like the older 1996 HSV GTS-R Commodore. There’s plenty of cool renders on Google from a wide range of people, so if you are curious as to what it might look like, give it a search. Only 250 GTS-R W1s will be produced, so we’re hoping a few find their way over to New Zealand so we can have a good ol’ thrash of one. 

René Vermeer

Dutch, French, or just a Kiwi, René isn’t quite sure, but he does know he has a passion for Japanese vehicles like no other. A well-seasoned Gran Turismo player dating back to his single-digit days, René has a comprehensive knowledge of a wide range of performance vehicles and has owned more than 30 performance cars here in New Zealand, ranging from Nissans to Hondas. A lover of photography, you’ll find him either peeping under someone’s bonnet to snap a detailed shot, or on the side of the racetrack, perfecting his panning.