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Holden’s first ever concept car – the 1969 Holden Hurricane – has been restored to its former glory by a select and dedicated team of Holden employees.

The project to restore the 42-year-old Hurricane concept began five years ago as a labour of love by a group of Holden workers. The process has been primarily driven by engineers and designers volunteering their spare time.

Now completely restored, the Holden Hurricane will be displayed at Motorclassica at the Melbourne Royal Exhibition Building from October 21-23.

Codenamed RD 001, the Hurricane was a mid-engined, rear-wheel drive two-seater sports car. It was powered by a 253 cubic inch (4.2-litre) Holden V8 engine with around 193kW of power – a whopping figure for its day.

The Hurricane was a truly futuristic concept decades ahead of its time. It showcased some features only becoming standard in today’s cars.

Among the most revolutionary features were the digital instrument displays, station-seeking radio, automatic temperature-control air conditioning, inertia-reel seatbelts, metallic paint, rear-view camera and the ‘Pathfinder’ system – an early form of in-car navigation.

Pathfinder used a system of magnets embedded at intersections to guide drivers on their desired path. A panel on the dash told the driver which way to turn by illuminating arrows and sounding a buzzer.

The rear-view camera used a closed circuit television (CCTV) system, incorporating a camera in the rear bumper and a small black and white TV in the centre console.

The initial design and engineering team was handpicked and sworn to secrecy while developing the Hurricane concept at Fishermans Bend during the 1960s.

The concept trades traditional doors for a hydraulically powered canopy that opens upwards over the front wheels. The ‘astronaut-type’ seats rise up and pivot forward, before lowering and reclining into position as the roof closes. The three-piece fibreglass body was tested in a wind tunnel.

The Hurricane also featured a number of safety innovations, including an integrated rollover bar, foam-lined fuel tank, interior padding, ignition safety locks and a fire warning system.

The restoration process has been a painstaking one for the Holden volunteers. It was returned to Holden in 2006, and previously spent time in a trade school where apprentices practised their welding on it.

Holden says it has used as many of the original parts as possible and remade a number of parts to 1969 specification to preserve the authenticity of the classic concept.


  • theillestlife

    imagine if they made it… itd be the standout car outside of centrelink :P

    • Freddo

      Idiot!

    • Grammar Nazi

      Yeah it’s noice and ritzy ay.

    • xr6

      Its space age by todays standards.Not to mention it was developed in 1969.

  • Harry B

    Looks better then most other sports cars out there right now

    Made so long ago and would fit right into the super car market of today

    You would be mad not to own one (if it were ever released)

  • Tim

    What’s the point?

    • Charger

      whats your point?

    • PhantomHamster

      whats the point of your idiotic comment?

      • Tim

        The “point” of my idiotic comment was to question the point of restoring this ancient pointless relic. It’s nearly being half a century since this concept was made, why show it off again now?

        Why not put the money towards fixing Holden’s current range?

        • Bangel

          Agreed pointless , not done by a small company , but by the general with imput from a few local yokels .

          • Charger

            you are a complete tosser bangle piss off drive your fwd puss box golf. It was built here in australia by australians to show what we could do here without Yanks get a clue go read something about a new VW Recall campaign

            and Tim try reading the article done in spare time so costs virtually nil to restore. to call something like this a “pointless relic” shows you have no idea.

          • Bangel

            Rubbish charger , it was the yanks man , pointless exercise from a car co that built and sold inferior cars to an unsupecting public with tariff protection to bolster its market share , with all profits going back to USA .

          • Captain Nemo

            And i suppose you think people should be restoring some wheezy unsafe gutless VeeDud from the 60s. That would be a better idea hey Bungel?

          • AJDelayed

            Bangel, you have a massive inferiority chip on yr shoulder.

      • Jim Sim

        *BOOM!!* There goes Bangels 8756467kw GTI exploding…
        I have an idea, if you have nothing nice to say, why dont you (for a change) keep your mouth shut?…. Or must you ruin every single thread that states Holden or Ford?

        Well done to the techs and engineers for their dedication. Especially for 5 years!

        • gmh-bogan

          Bangel is jealous of the relationship between Holden and the Australian people.

          • Bangel

            YER between holden GM and the aussie bogans , who are gullible enough to buy their second rate cars .

            Usual suspect dim sim/zero/spent8 still driving the that bomberdore VK , wow 5 years of work and thats the result the VK to VE, tech masterpieces .

          • Captain Nemo

            gmh-bogan

            Bungel probably had the doors blown off his VeeDud by an old VK or something hence his dislike of all things Holden. Probably also carries a wheel brace under the seat to throw at any car that gets off quicker from the lights than him too.

            He road rages by make anyone in an Aussie built car would never be let into the flow of heavy traffic from a side street but someone in a VeeDud would be let in with a friendly wave.

          • Bangel

            Corporal zero , as you know i once experienced the frightening build quality and performance of the VS , i have never looked back after that miserable chapter in my life , i discovered the joys of HONDA/SUBARU/VW , superior cars to crummers .

            Only bogans partake in traffic light grand prix , educated drivers in their euro models are out on the B blasting past low tech crummers .

            No crummmers in our neighbour hood , only BMW/AUDI/MERC/VW , do see a few yobbos passing Kmart in their centerlink sponsored VK’S .

        • gmh-bogan

          Nemo,Bangel has his own tow truck driver called Barry.

          • Harry B

            Without cars like this our cars of today would be pre-historic relics and no one would have any special features

            Thats the bloody point

    • Jack

      Tim, I gotta say: what’s the point of restoring any old car? What’s the point of restoring old buildings? What’s the point of National Heritage? World Heritage Areas? What’s the point of collecting important books in a Library? What’s the point of hosting websites of knowledge in cyberspace?

      These artifacts and knowledge and natural heritage are all priceless, and show how our civilisation values itself, its achievements and its morality. Well done to the workers for restoring this.

    • AJDelayed

      The point is to preserve it for future generations.
      So that people can see what was done in the past.
      I’m 37 and didn’t know about it until i saw this. I look forward to seeing it in the flesh.
      It’s a shame local designers and manufacturers don’t build more concepts more often.
      We need more people looking to the future and less people whinging and complaining and trying to hold us all back.

  • Charger

    Amazing to think that a small company like holden could have built such car back then!

    Glad to see it has finally been restored properly!

  • Crummydore

    They should build it…. it would be the transport of choice in traffic jams as it’s low enough to go under all the Prado’s and Cruisers out there these days!

    Lovely design… I can almost see a bit of McLaren F1 at the front.

  • Lloyd

    Fantastic and an awesome car. I guess you have to have lived in this era to appreciate this car and how good it looked back then. I wouldn’t expect younger guys to think much of it but that’s their problem. This and the GTR-X and the Super-Q HQ Holden were about style and trying things. Its intriguing trying to understand what the stylists thought was futurist in the 60s @ 70s and what designers think is futuristic now.

  • Bob

    Best car Holden ever made!

  • Planned_Obsolescence

    If my memory is correct it even had oil cooled brakes, still a great looking car.

  • Fred

    It’s the only cool Holden; too bad it wasn’t produced.

  • JEKYL & HYDE

    ca,

    any chance of some engine specs?must of have a big stick,compression,exhaust to get there…

  • Ox

    Shove in the 6.2L and it’d be as good as new

  • davie

    I think I remember that this concept car was really made to demonstrate the new Holden 4.2 litre V8. Up until that point, I think that Holden had used Chev v8′s or none at all?

    I remember seeing this car and the Torana GTR-X at the Sydney powerhouse museum in the 90′s. They were both amazing looking cars and the Torana’s interior was simply the most beautiful interior I have ever seen. It still is.

    Its a pity that holden never built the Torana GTR-X they would have had a big seller on their hands I believe.

    I’m glad that the Hurricane is still around and being looked after.

    • Don Quay

      You’re right about the V8s. The first ones were the Chev 307 and 327 in the HK. I know because I learnt to drive behind a 307. Then came the 253 V8 (4.2L) which as others have said, the Hurricane was produced to promote. The 308 V8 came from the 253 and so no need for the Chev 5L V8. If I remember correctly, they still continued with the larger Chev V8 in the 350 cid version for a few more years.

  • crouchy

    They should just whack a JOSS badge on it…. how’s that thing coming along btw???

    • Thrillhouse

      Right on schedule for a 2026 launch

  • delux

    Looks like a Matchbox car I had as a kid. That’d be on the Top Gear cool wall.

    • Lloyd

      Was that a Mazda rx500?

  • Far Canal Racing

    They should have stopped then and there,they haven’t got any better since then JUNK.

  • Bent 8 Brigade

    Always rather liked the GTR-X, made to compete with the 240Z one of which I was lucky enough to own. Would’ve outgunned a 240Z too with the mechanicals from the XU-1

  • Snoop

    I can’t help but notice there is no comment from Bangel on the Polo GTI story.
    Why is it Bangel that you insist on involving yourself in the stories you have absolutely no interest in? All you do is write negative comments about cars you don’t like.
    You keep repeating yourself, we get the idea.
    Either bugger off and stick to the VW stories, or bugger off to Europe all together.

    • Bangel

      Did i miss something about our glorious VW ,i do have interest in this story of wimsical dreamy holden that was funded and built using GM money and expertise , turned up nothing in the end , non of ot got into torana’s or crummers .

      • Captain Nemo

        You seem to keep missing the stories about VeeDud’s TSI118 hand grenade hey Bungel.
        All over the net but no its fingers in the ears LALALALA not listening LALALALALA.

        • Jim Sim

          *BOOM!!*
          Poor Bangel, better collect those pieces of piston and rod scattered over the freeway from your 9865i64876kw GTI. Its ok though, barry, your resident tow truck drivers right behind you.

          • gmh-bogan

            Barry so busy these days.The rumour has it Barry is about to join the BRW rich 100 list.

  • toxic_horse

    Thats a lot of grunt for a 253 . The GT350 only made i think 205 Kw

  • Holden freak

    I maybe a kid as some people say but i no a good car when i see on tand this car should of been put in the production list because when it comes to car im old school i love old muscle cars especially holden and to those people say Holden is Shit, you must not be Australian at all

  • John

    I remember seeing this as a kid of 10yrs old, got the chance to sit in it at that time.
    Was touted as the future of motoring, and guess what it was.

    Gad to see that it has been reborn for the future generations to see.

  • Flash vy

    This car now lives in the Holden museum in Echuca