A special edition Holden Commodore celebrating 20 years since three-time V8 Supercars champion Craig Lowndes first drove for the local lion is expected to launch just in time for this year's Bathurst 1000.
Publicised early on a Holden dealer's Facebook page, the Special Edition Craig Lowndes Holden Commodore is yet to be officially announced by Holden, but we understand it will be based on the existing SS V Redline. The release date is tipped to coincide with this year’s Bathurst 1000 in early October.
Intended to mark 20 years since Craig Lowndes’ 1994 Sandown 500 debut with the Holden Racing Team, the premature dealer information suggests the model will be available in either Red Hot or Heron White and feature unique decals, badging and build numbers – with #001 going to Lowndes himself.
Further distinguishing the special edition should be a Red Hot engine cover, black grille and DRL surrounds, black fender vents and mirror caps, a black rear spoiler and black 20-inch forged alloy wheels sitting atop four-piston Brembo brakes front and rear.
Inside, unique sill plates and a ‘Craig Lowndes’-embroidered dash pad should complete the aesthetic package. Vehicle performance is expected to remain unchanged.
Though some early suggestions are for an initial run of 161 special edition cars – the same number of laps as the Bathurst 100 – more could well be made. With Commodore sales enjoying a sizeable bounce, the company is unlikely to temper itself in the face of market demand should it exist.
Helping to boost desirability, initial information suggests each Craig Lowndes Special Edition buyer will receive exclusive access to the driver himself and time with the Red Bull Racing Australia team.
Contacted for comment, a Holden spokesman only revealed the local manufacturer was currently working with Craig Lowndes on a “very exciting Special Edition Commodore pack”.
“We’re not in a position to officially announce any details as yet but looking forward to launching what promises to be a very special car in the coming months,” the spokesman said.
Once announced, the Lowndes special edition is expected to command a small premium over the 270kW/530Nm 6.0-litre V8-powered SS-V Redline Commodore, which currently starts at $52,490.
After a nine-year stint driving for key rival Ford, Lowndes switched back to Holden in 2010 as part of Triple Eight Race Engineering’s move away from the Blue Oval. Now under the banner of Red Bull Racing Australia, Lowndes – a five-time winner of the Bathurst 1000 – sits in sixth place in the championship with seven rounds to go.
The 2014 Bathurst 1000 V8 Supercars race is due to kick off on October 9 at the world famous Mount Panorama.