2019 Shannons Melbourne Autumn Classic Auction

1957 Holden FE Utility




Engine 138ci six-cylinder
Gearbox Three-speed manual
Body Work Utility
Colour Tan with chocolate brown roof
Interior Blue
Trim Vinyl
Wheels Steel wheels with hubcaps
Brakes Drum/drum


This lot is no longer available

Although still selling strongly, the original Holden design was looking a little dated by the mid-‘50s and General Motors took the opportunity to release a completely restyled model, designated the FE, in July 1956. With integrated rear wings and a curved one-piece windscreen, the Holden took on a modern appearance, more in keeping with contemporary Chevrolets. The engine produced more power, steering was improved with the adoption of a sealed recirculating-ball system, there were better brakes and 12-volt electrics for the first time, with a key-operated starter. Inside, a new dash with built-in speaker grille, lockable glove box and redesigned instrument cluster was the big news but a host of minor changes, such as pendant-style clutch and brake pedals, made the FE more pleasant to drive. Holden raised the compression ratio on the grey motor to 6.8:1, added bigger valves and stronger pistons to increase power and improve performance, while smaller 13-inch wheels gave better roadholding. The FE proved as popular as its FX/FJ predecessors, selling more than 150,000 units in just under two years of production and saw the introduction of a new Station Sedan (wagon) variant, while the commercials (ute and panel van) remained very popular with tradesmen. The ute is still one of the more desirable models of the FE family today, partly due to the rarity - most had hard working lives and therefore few survive today - and also due to the popularity of utes with Holden collectors in general.

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