Autoblog: Will the next Holden Commodore go front-wheel drive?

argatoga

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http://www.autoblog.com/2010/12/10/will-the-next-holden-commodore-go-front-wheel-drive/
Since 1978, the Holden Commodore has been roaring across the land down under. It's worn a plethora of body styles ranging from coupe and sedan to wagon and ute, brought the Pontiac G8 to American soil and sold over 44,000 units last year in Australia. During its run, the Holden Commodore has been a rear-wheel drive vehicle, but new reports state that the front-engine/rear-drive layout may not be in the cards for much longer.

The next-generation Commodore is going to appear by 2015 and it's possible that General Motors may switch it to a front-wheel drive car. The goal is increased fuel-efficiency for GM's large cars and the front-wheel drive platforms are the ones set up to deliver the highest fuel efficiency.

The Holden Commodore could ride on the Super Epsilon II platform, which will also make its way into the next Chevrolet Impala and the upcoming Cadillac XTS. Sure, we understand why an automaker would look to make this change but it doesn't mean we have to like it. We prefer our Maltidas waltzing and our Commodores drifting.
 

gaasc

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At which point 50% of Australians that are Holden fans will start burning dealerships.
 

2Billion

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I wonder if Super Epsilon II is able to go RWD and nobody realizes it. Why? Some of the models that are proposed for it - this, Cadillac XTS - don't work in FWD.

Or GM is 'tarded. The latter is more likely.
 

Hbriz

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If they change to FWD, sure they will lose sales. If Holden goes first, then Ford will probably see an increase in sales. But the main buyer groups for these cars; fleets, taxis, businesses and what have you, wouldn't give a flying fuck if they were FWD. They'd probably be happy with it since it will show an improvement in fuel consumption. All the fleet managers care about is running costs and that it is made in Australia, and I doubt many of them would care which wheels make it move.

The people who buy them for private use on the other hand may well care. They'd complain for a while, say FWD is the work of the devil, and then buy it anyway. After all, the Falcon and Commodore have no RWD rivals apart from each other. And what percentage of these are sold to private buyers? Less than 40% I'd wager.

I'd like them to stay RWD as it is a major difference between the Falcodore and any other reasonably priced family car.
 

rickhamilton620

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The people who buy them for private use on the other hand may well care. They'd complain for a while, say FWD is the work of the devil, and then buy it anyway. After all, the Falcon and Commodore have no RWD rivals apart from each other. And what percentage of these are sold to private buyers? Less than 40% I'd wager.

I'd like them to stay RWD as it is a major difference between the Falcodore and any other reasonably priced family car.
You have a point...we're going thorough a somewhat similar dramatic change with Ford's Explorer. While there are plenty of diehard Explorer owners swearing that the outgoing 4th gen will be their last because it's RWD/4WD/AWD and body on frame, apparently Ford's gotten way more orders for the new FWD/AWD car-based unibody model than they've anticipated.

Granted, the Explorer is nowhere as significant as it was even 10 years ago in the SUV market, and probably isn't as significant as the Commodore is in Australia, but it's a very important nameplate with plenty of good equity. If it can happen successfully here (and we don't know because I don't even think the car's on sale yet...) then it can probably work somewhat decently there.

I was Googling to find out what the best selling car in Australia was and happened to find this article from Yesterday: http://smh.drive.com.au/motor-news/holden-australians-still-want-large-cars-20101210-18sjx.html

Some choice quotes:

Australians will still want large cars for large families and a large country, according to Holden chairman and CEO Mike Devereux.

But it will have to be more fuel efficient than ever, with Holden improving economy on the large car - the best seller for 15 straight years - to as little as 8.4 litres per 100km in the short term.

Speaking to journalists at an end of year lunch, he confirmed the next "two or three months" would involve some big decisions about the long term future of the Commodore.
"we're still very confident about the long-term future of locally-made large rear-wheel-drive family and performance cars."

"We're still very confident Australians want to have families with backyards," said Devereux.
Hmm, trying to perform damage control perhaps?:lol:

And btw....earth to Holden CEO: There are plenty of places where families have backyards and they do just fine with front drive family sedans. :p Not saying that there shouldn't be a RWD family sedan but I felt like he was a little off with that statement.
 
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AudiV6

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Insignia based Commodore? Why not, it allows 4WD too. :p

At least that will follow the usual Tradition, to base every Commodore on whats basicly an Opel Rekord, only now with the smaller Vectra successor, welcome to the downsizing-club! :lol:
 

Hidden_Hunter

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Insignia based Commodore? Why not, it allows 4WD too. :p

At least that will follow the usual Tradition, to base every Commodore on whats basicly an Opel Rekord, only now with the smaller Vectra successor, welcome to the downsizing-club! :lol:
Except for the current model which has nothing to do with any Opel
 

Dsemaj

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Nope.

Reports happen every 5 or so years, then it dies off in the arse. Holden is pretty much GM's RWD developing base anyway... so why would Commodore go FWD?
 

SchumacherM

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Nah, it won't go fail wheel drive. The market down under is terrified of FWD just like BMW..at least in my book. :D
 

AiR

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Ha, so if Holden is correct, australians have lower demands on fuel economy than americans! That's funny.
 

Programme

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Stories about the Commodore (and Falcon) going FWD surface every few years and never have amounted to anything.

Ha, so if Holden is correct, australians have lower demands on fuel economy than americans! That's funny.
Would you be worried if unleaded was around 8 SEK a litre?
 

chaos386

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So...did they actually get a tip from someone that the next Commodore will be FWD, or is it just something they "reckon"?
 

AiR

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Would you be worried if unleaded was around 8 SEK a litre?
I remember when it was :lol:
I would be worried if I had to pay 8 for fuel if I drove something that needed an excess of 10l/100km, which is around the ballpark I expect to end up in if Holden says "8.4". Australias record is pretty abysmal, the average new car sold in Autralia in 2010 is a 200g/km car, compared to 145 in Europe and 130 in Japan. If we include only cars made in Australia, the figure is even higher. The US is the worst, but not twice as bad as Australia as one might expect with half the gas price, they come in at 255g. But the key difference is that the EU, Japan, China and the US have all set mandatory emission targets. In the EU that target is 120g/km in 2015, and manufacturers are already beating the projections (as expected with heavy fines for each gram exceeding the limit). The US doesnt understand what a "gram" is but their CAFE regulations demand 39 MPG cars from 2016, which I have to say is surprisingly good considering. Meanwhile Australia doesnt have an mandatory emissions target at all.

http://theage.drive.com.au/motor-news/australia-lags-behind-on-emission-control-20100618-ym1w.html
http://www.euractiv.com/en/transport/eu-clinches-deal-co2-emissions-cars/article-177675
 
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