1988 Holden HSV VL Commodore Walkinshaw Group A SS Sedan
|Trim||Blue/Grey Tweed Velour|
Operated by Scot Tom Walkinshaw, Holden Special Vehicles was established in 1988 following Holden’s widely publicised split with Peter Brock in 1987 and the first model offered by the new performance tuning operation was the radical Group A SS, based on the then current VL Commodore. Built between March and November 1988 in very limited numbers (a total of 750 were made) to homologate the car for Bathurst, the Walkinshaw Commodore boasted a highly tuned 5-litre V8 with Delco EFI producing 180kW of power and 380Nm of torque. Other mechanical upgrades included a five-speed Borg-Warner T56 manual gearbox, Turbo 6/V8 brakes and 16 by 7-inch alloy wheels on 225/55 VR16 tyres. The original HSV was clothed in a dramatic body kit whose most arresting features were the built-up boot-lid spoiler and bonnet bulge needed to clear the twin-throttle body intake manifold, making the Walkinshaw Commodore instantly recognisable. All were finished in the same Panorama Silver body colour and priced on a par with the best European luxury cars - at $47,000 the car was more than three times the price of a base VL. The HSV represented a big advance over the HDT VL Group A in many respects, offering a lot more performance, refinement and of course that wild body kit. The freshly homologated Group A Commodore made its racing debut at Brands Hatch in Round 10 of the 1988 British Touring Car Championship but initially struggled to compete with the turbocharged Ford Sierra RS500 and Nissan Skylines. A reversal of fortune saw the Holden score an impressive win at Bathurst in 1990 thanks to Win Percy and Allan Grice in the factory-backed HDT entry, ensuring its status as an Australian motor sport legend. With steady growth in values over the past couple of years, the Walkinshaw Group A Commodores remain hot property on the modern Aussie muscle car scene and prices look set to continue rising well into the future.