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by Tim Beissmann

General Motors has hosed down speculation the next-generation Holden Commodore Sportwagon and Ute could be headed to North America alongside the VF sedan.

Rumours of an expanded export deal between Holden and US sister brand Chevrolet, gained momentum earlier this month following the revelation that parent company GM recently renewed its trademark for the Chevrolet Nomad and El Camino nameplates – synonymous with wagon and utility models of last century.

But a GM spokesman has poured water on the speculation, telling US industry journal Automotive News that renewing trademarks was simply a routine business measure and not an indication of its intentions to relaunch the nameplates on Australian-made Commodore-based vehicles.

“We trademark these names as needed to protect them as a matter of practice,” he said.

US enthusiast blog GM Authority first discovered the trademark filings for the once famous but now disused rear-wheel-drive monikers, which were lodged with the United States Patent and Trademark Office in May (Nomad) and August (El Camino).

The nameplates were rumoured for the new VF-series versions of the Commodore Sportwagon and Ute, following confirmation in May that Holden would export the VF Commodore sedan to North America from late 2013 where it will be rebadged as the Chevrolet SS.

Holden spokesman Sean Poppitt told CarAdvice no decision had been made on the VF Ute or its export potential and insisted reports on the matter were purely speculative, although he admitted Holden was “constantly studying” opportunities to sell more of its Australian-made cars.

“We will always examine any opportunity for profitable export programs,” Poppitt said.

“We are right now entirely focused on next year’s launch of the fantastic new VF Commodore and very excited to see it entering the United States as the Chevrolet SS performance sedan.”

The news comes around three weeks after GM unveiled the Chevrolet SS NASCAR racer, which provided us with our first look at the updated styling of the new Commodore. The VF will be officially revealed in February before going on sale in Australia in April.

The Chevrolet Nomad was a station wagon produced in North America between 1955 and 1972, and was applied to a trim package for the full-size Chevrolet Van during the late 70s and early 80s, while the El Camino ute spanned four decades (1959-1987) and five generations before it was discontinued in favour of larger, traditional pick-up trucks.

Holden attempted to export the VE Commodore Ute to North America as the rebadged Pontiac G8 ST (pictured top) at the end of the last decade but those plans fell through as the iconic American brand was discontinued as part of GM’s restructuring during the global financial crisis.




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