Holden Commodore (VF)
|Holden Commodore (VF)|
|Manufacturer||Holden (General Motors)|
|Also called||Holden Calais
Chevrolet SS (United States)
Vauxhall VXR8 (United Kingdom)
|Model years||2014–present (Chevrolet)|
|Assembly||Australia: Elizabeth, South Australia|
|Designer||Justin Thompson (2008)|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door coupé utility
5-door station wagon
|Layout||Front-engine, rear-wheel drive|
Holden Caprice (WN)
|Engine||3.0 L SIDI V6
3.6 L SIDI V6
6.0 L Generation 4 Alloy V8
6.2 L LS3 V8 (Chevrolet SS)
|Transmission||6-speed GM 6L45-E automatic
6-speed GM 6L80-E automatic
6-speed Aisin AY6 manual
6-speed Tremec TR-6060 manual
|Predecessor||Holden Commodore (VE)|
The Holden Commodore (VF) is a full-size car that has been produced by Holden since June 2013. It is the second and last significant restyled iteration of the final fourth generation of the Holden Commodore to be manufactured in Australia. Its range comprises sedan and station wagon body variants that also sell in luxury Holden Calais (VF) guise. A commercial utility version also sells under the Holden Ute (VF) guise.
The Commodore SS sedan is exported to the United States and rebadged as the Chevrolet SS. Holden Special Vehicles (HSV) uses the VF series as the basis of its performance Gen-F sedan sedan, wagon and utility range, which are also exported to the United Kingdom and rebadged as the Vauxhall VXR8 range.
In December 2013, GM announced that it will discontinue Australian production of the VF Commodore and all other Australian production in 2017.
The VF Commodore is built on an altered version of the Holden designed GM Zeta platform, which was first used in the VE Commodore. The VF is an evolution of the VE, with several visual changes. The VF features new styling at the front and rear, with a more modern, sculpted appearance replacing the simplicity of the VE's design. Changes include altered headlights and tail lamps, alterations to the plastic of the intake and grille and the use of a lip-spoiler instead of a rear wing on the performance models. The bodyshell, windows, doors, mirrors and roof were all carried over from the VE and the wagon and utility variants use the same tail lamps as the VE models. The wheelbase and track also remain unchanged.
The interior has also undergone major changes, with switches such as the boot lid release being relocated from the glove box to the doors and the fitting of an electronic handbrake. All models are fitted with an eight-inch touch screen in the centre console, with keyless entry and auto-park assist also being standard across all models. Other features include a head-up display on the windscreen, forward and rear collision warning systems, blind spot monitors and a lane departure warning system, however these are not standard on all models. The VF uses an electric power steering system, rather than the hydraulic system used on previous Commodores, which is slightly more fuel-economical at the cost of steering feel.
The majority of the testing for the VF was completed in Australia but it was also driven in Germany, the Middle East, North America and Sweden. Show-car versions of the SS V and the Calais V were unveiled to the public on 10 February 2013, with the first pre-production models completed in April 2013.
Like its predecessor, the VF achieved five stars in the ANCAP safety ratings. On top of the ratings tests, the VF was found to have good whiplash protection for occupants, though pedestrian protection was classified as marginal, with the car scoring just 15.41 out of a possible 36 points in this area.
|ANCAP Test Results|
|Test[N 1]||Points||Out of||%|
|Seat belt reminder:||3.00||3||100%|
In May 2014, Holden recalled nearly 42,000 VF and WN Caprice models after a potential problem with the front seatbelts was identified. It was found that the pretensioner wiring harness for the seatbelts could make contact with part of the buckle assembly, leading to premature wearing of the wiring harness which could disable the pretensioner system in the event of an accident. The VF was recalled again a month later, when it was found that the drive gear for the windscreen wiper motor could fail. LPG models were recalled in July after it was identified that the feed hose could develop a slow leak at the end of the vehicle's lifetime, creating a low risk of fire.
The VF uses the same engines as the VE, with minor alterations to improve performance and fuel efficiency, while the automatic gearbox was redesigned to give more appropriate gear selections. Fuel economy has also been improved by the use of aluminium body panels and components, leading to the VF being 43 kilograms (95 lb) lighter than the VE, and the electric power steering system. The new styling has also improved the aerodynamic efficiency, with the coefficient of drag dropping from 0.33 to 0.30. As a result, fuel consumption has dropped by between three and eight percent depending on the engine and specification level.
|Eng. disp.; configuration||Engine||Power[N 2]||Torque||Transmission||Fuel type||Fuel consumption (sedan)[N 3]||Production|
|3.0 L (2,997 cc); V6||SIDI (LF1)||185 kW (248 hp)||290 N·m (210 lb·ft)||6-speed GM 6L45-E automatic||Petrol/E85||8.3 L/100 km (28.3 mpg-US)||2013–2014|
|3.6 L (3,564 cc); V6||SIDI (LFX)||210 kW (280 hp)||350 N·m (260 lb·ft)||6-speed Aisin AY6 manual||9.0 L/100 km (26.1 mpg-US)||2013–2014|
|6-speed GM 6L45-E automatic||2013–2014|
|LPG (LWR)||180 kW (240 hp)||320 N·m (240 lb·ft)||LPG||11.5 L/100 km (20.5 mpg-US)||2013–2014|
|6.0 L (5,967 cc); V8||Generation 4 Alloy (L77)||270 kW (360 hp)||530 N·m (390 lb·ft)||6-speed Tremec TR-6060 manual||Petrol/E85||11.5 L/100 km (20.5 mpg-US)||2013–2014|
|Generation 4 Alloy (AFM) (L77)||260 kW (350 hp)||517 N·m (381 lb·ft)||6-speed GM 6L80-E automatic||2013–2014|
The number of specification levels was reduced compared to the VE, with the Berlina (nameplate introduced in 1984) and Omega (introduced in 2006) dropped. Prices are A$5000 to $10,000 less than the previous VE models, with the sedan ranging from $34,990 for the base-model Evoke to $53,690 for the SS V Redline automatic. Utility variants cost less than the corresponding sedan, while the wagon variants are more expensive.
- Commodore Evoke
The Evoke is the new entry-level nameplate as reflected by its range of engines, which included as standard the same 3.0 L SIDI V6 engine fitted to the VE Commodore Omega, and the optional 3.6 L LPG-powered V6, both available only with an automatic transmission. The central console display will increase in size from 6.5-inches to 8-inches (16–20 centimeters), featuring a single-CD player, compatibility with MP3 and iPod and mobile phone integration. The audio, navigation and mobile phone controls all feature voice recognition technology. Safety features include six airbags, traction control and ABS. The Evoke comes with 16-inch alloy wheels.
- Commodore SV6
The SV6 utilises the larger 3.6 L SIDI V6 engine and is available with both a manual and automatic transmission. The SV6 is also available with the 3.6 L LPG V6. The SV6 features a sportier body kit than the Evoke, with LED running lights, a lip spoiler and 18-inch alloy wheels. The interior fittings are much the same as the Evoke with the exception of sports seats.
- Commodore SS
The SS has the same cosmetic features as the SV6, but is equipped with the 6.0 L Generation 4 Alloy V8 engine. The cosmetically changed SS V series will continue, featuring larger 19-inch wheels and front foglights. Inside, the SS V gains leather seats, an enhanced instrument display and satellite navigation system and a DVD player. The SS V Redline provides sporting features over those of the SS V, with improved brake and suspension packages, extra collision sensors, launch control (manual) and a sunroof.
The Calais and Calais V are both available with the 3.6 L V6 engine used in the SV6, though the 6.0 L V8 is also used in the Calais V. Both models are only available with an automatic transmission. The Calais features premium styling with chrome highlights both inside and out, with leather seats and 18-inch wheels. The Calais V uses the same satellite navigation system as the SS V and also features a sunroof, heated front seats, DVD player and 19-inch wheels as standard.
There have been four limited edition Commodore models produced, available on a range of specification levels:
- International: based on the Evoke and available in sedan and Sportwagon form, this limited edition celebrated the 35th anniversary of the Commodore nameplate. It featured 18-inch wheels, minor alterations to the exterior and interior styling and leather seats.
- Storm: available on the SV6 and SS sedan, Sportwagon and Ute specification, it featured a unique wheel design and "Storm" badging inside and out, satellite navigation and red stitching in the seats.
- Collingwood: dubbed the "Collingwoodore", this limited edition was available in SV6, SS or SS V sedan specification only painted in Heron White. These cars featured unique 20-inch wheels and extra badging and decals associated with the Collingwood Football Club.
- Craig Lowndes: available in SS-V Redline specification painted only in Heron White or Red Hot. This limited edition celebrated Craig Lowndes' 20th anniversary of first competing with Holden in the local V8 Supercars series, and it featured: upgraded Brembo front and rear brakes (front only on standard Redline models); 20-inch staggered wheels; black roof, spoiler, guard vents, bonnet and door stripes; red engine cover; embroidered "Craig Lowndes" signature on the dashboard. The cars are individually numbered 1 to 233, with vehicle no. 1 owned by Craig Lowndes himself.
HSV range (Gen-F)
The enhanced performance VF range sold by Holden Special Vehicles (HSV) is marketed in Australia as the Generation F ("Gen-F") and it comprises the variants listed below. All body styles are exported to the United Kingdom where they are rebadged and sold as the Vauxhall VXR8 range.
The ClubSport is the entry-level sedan in the HSV range. It is powered by a 6.2 L LS3 V8 engine, with power and torque figures of 317 kW (425 hp) and 550 N·m (410 lb·ft). The ClubSport R8 variant has a more powerful engine (with an extra 15 kW (20 hp) of power and 20 N·m (15 lb·ft)) and minor visual changes compared to the standard ClubSport, including SV badges. The ClubSport R8 Tourer is the station wagon version. All ClubSport models feature 20-inch wheels and standard six-speed manual transmission or optional six-speed automatic.
In November 2014, as part of the MY15 update, power increased to 325 kW (436 hp) for the base ClubSport and 340 kW (460 hp) for the R8.
In July 2015, HSV launched the limited edition Clubsport R8 25th Anniversary to commemorate the nameplate. It did not benefit of any performance increases but only extra fitments that included forged alloy wheels and special badges and trims. Production totalled 108 units (8 of which for export to New Zealand).
The GTS features the 6.2 L LSA supercharged V8, with power and torque figures of 430 kW (580 hp) and 740 N·m (550 lb·ft). At the time of its release, the GTS was the most powerful car ever produced in Australia. Like the ClubSport, the GTS is available with both a six-speed manual and a six-speed automatic transmission. The GTS has larger brakes and a larger rear spoiler than the ClubSport.
The Maloo is a utility version of the ClubSport, with R8 and R8 SV models also available. A limited edition GTS Maloo was launched in November 2014, feauturing the GTS sedan mechanicals except for its Magnetic Ride Control suspension.
The Senator Signature has a more conservative exterior design than the ClubSport and GTS, and luxury fitments from the donor Holden Calais. It features the SV engine option, with power and torque figures of 340 kW (460 hp) and 570 N·m (420 lb·ft). Like the ClubSport, the Senator Signature is available with both a six-speed manual and a six-speed automatic transmission.
The VF Commodore is sold in the United States as a performance vehicle under the name of Chevrolet SS. It is sized between the Malibu and the Impala in the Chevrolet lineup and also fills the void left behind by the Pontiac G8 after the Pontiac brand was discontinued in 2010. It went on sale as a 2014 model year vehicle in late 2013, designed and manufactured by GM Holden in Australia. It is Chevrolet's first rear-wheel drive V8 sedan available to the general public in seventeen years since the fourth-generation Chevrolet Caprice and the seventh-generation Impala SS. The vehicle was unveiled during Speedweeks in Daytona Beach, Florida, in February 2013.
The Chevrolet SS utilises the 6.2 L V8 engine from the Corvette, with power and torque figures of 310 kW (420 hp) and 563 N·m (415 lb·ft). The only available transmission, a six-speed automatic, can be shifted manually using paddle shifters on the steering wheel.
The Chevrolet SS has an MSRP of US$44,470. There is a single, fully equipped specification level, with two optional extras; a sunroof and a full-size spare tire. The SS comes with Chevrolet's MyLink system (including Bluetooth, Sirius XM Radio, HD Radio and Pandora Radio features) and, like the VF Commodore, has auto-park assist, a blind-spot monitoring system, a lane departure warning system and electronic power steering. The SS is fitted with 19-inch wheels. On 7 June 2013 Holden began touting the VF Commodore and its ties to the Chevrolet SS in a series of new television commercials which were released on-line.
On 6 September 2013, Chevrolet announced that the number of Chevrolet SS vehicles are limited to selected Chevrolet dealerships based on their sales of the Corvette C7 and the SS's brother, the Camaro, claiming that the allocation might have more to do with production rather than supply and demand. Chevrolet projected about 2,000 to 3,000 vehicles a year instead of the much speculated 15,000 to 20,000 cited in the media.
Chevrolet added a manual transmission, magnetic ride suspension and OnStar's 4G LTE service to the SS for the 2015 model year, whose updated look made its debut at the Woodward Dream Cruise in August 2014.
On 30 July 2014, Chevrolet announced that the SS would become the first vehicle in the brand's lineup to feature an automatic parking assist.
For the 2016 model year Chevrolet announced that the SS will receive a updated front end with revised LED lighting, dual exhausts, one new color (Slipstream Blue) replacing two colors (Perfect Blue and Alchemy Purple Metallic), and red Brembo brakes.
The VF Commodore was launched during a downwards trend in large car sales in Australia. Despite this, 2,827 cars were sold in the first month after its launch, a 17.8 percent increase over the corresponding month in 2012. Sales continued to be strong for the rest of 2013, with sales in the second half of the year up by 19 percent compared to the same period in 2012.
The VF series will be the fifteenth and final Australian-made Commodore range since the introduction of this nameplate in 1978.
For marketing purposes, the VF Commodore is raced in various motorsport disciplines, however, the race cars generally have no physical or mechanical relationship with the production model, other than similar looks.
The VF Commodore is currently used by teams running Holdens in the International V8 Supercars Championship. The V8 Supercar version of the VF was designed by Ludo Lacroix in conjunction with Holden and the Holden Racing Team. It was first shown by Garry Rogers Motorsport on 11 February 2013. The VF was the first Holden model built to 'Next Generation V8 Supercar' regulations, a formula designed to decrease the cost of building and repairing cars. The V8 Supercar version features a 5.0 L V8 engine, 18-inch control wheels, a specially designed aerodynamics kit, a polycarbonate windscreen as well as many category control parts. It was the first Holden V8 Supercar to feature an end-mounted rear wing since the VP Commodore in the 1990s. Only certain body panels are common between the road car and the V8 Supercar, as well as the headlights and tail lamps, with the rest of the components being custom made by each team.
The VF had a successful debut at the 2013 Clipsal 500, with Craig Lowndes and Shane Van Gisbergen taking their cars to victory in the two races. Van Gisbergen also claimed both pole positions. The VF Commodore won twenty-eight of the thirty-six races in 2013, with Triple Eight Race Engineering, Tekno Autosports, Brad Jones Racing, Garry Rogers Motorsport and the Holden Racing Team all taking wins in the new Commodore. Holden secured the 2013 Manufacturers' Championship with fourteen races remaining in the season. Jamie Whincup won the championship in his Commodore, ahead of Triple Eight Race Engineering teammate Lowndes.
A Chevrolet SS-branded car competes in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, having made its debut during the Sprint Unlimited non-championship race in 2013. Kevin Harvick won the Sprint Unlimited in the car's first outing. It is one of the new Generation 6 vehicles, replacing the Car of Tomorrow. Jimmie Johnson gave the SS a winning debut at the 2013 Daytona 500 after Danica Patrick took pole in her SS. Like its Commodore counterpart in V8 Supercars, the SS won the NASCAR Sprint Cup manufacturers' championship with three rounds remaining. Johnson went on to win the title in his SS.
As part of the VF Commodore launch in Australia, two television commercials were produced. The 'Turns Heads. Changes Minds.' commercial demonstrated the vehicle's available head-up display and Automatic Parking Assist feature. The 'Think now. Think Tomorrow. Think Holden.' is centered around a patriotic support theme.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Holden Commodore (VF).|
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It was the second win of the weekend for Holden who have already sealed the 2013 Manufacturer’s Championship ahead of Ford, Nissan and Erebus with their three Mercedes-Benz AMG E63s.
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