1972 Holden LJ Torana GTR-XU1 Sedan
|Body Work||2 Door Sedan|
With the introduction of the LC Torana range in 1969, Harry Firth - then Competitions Manager at Holden - saw that the future of Touring Car racing lay in the smaller, lighter and ultimately more reliable Torana rather than the big, thirsty Monaros. Based on the sportiest model in the range, the GTR, the new XU-1 had its Bathurst debut in 1970, with three Holden Dealer Team entries and several privateers doing battle with the Falcon GT-HOs. With promising results in 1970 and again in 1971, Holden released an updated XU-1 based on the LJ series Torana for 1972, with revised styling plus several interior components lifted from the new HQ range. Mechanically, the XU-1 package was used to homologate various components like heavy-duty springs, revised camshaft and lightened flywheel. With Globe Sprintmaster wheels and 3.08:1 diff, the LJ-model Toranas were now capable of touching 225 km/h down Conrod Straight at Bathurst. In 1972, wet weather and the driving genius of Peter Brock combined to defeat the mighty GT-HOs in the Hardie Ferodo 500 at Bathurst, and thereafter the XU-1s earned a "Giant Killer" reputation. In XU-1 form, the LC and LJ model Torana's looks were improved by a big bootlid spoiler, blackouts and some wild colours (and names), along with a 17-gallon fuel tank. With combined figures of around 3300 XU-1s produced in both LC and LJ versions, prices of genuine XU-1s have shown rapid appreciation in recent years and this trend looks set to continue. Interest in these iconic muscle cars, with Bathurst-winning heritage, is at an all-time high.