Holden Special Vehicles (HSV) has some exciting things coming beyond the end of Commodore production in Australia - including a HSV Colorado - but one idea it has shelved for the short-term is exports.
However, beyond 2020 there seems every chance of Melbourne-tuned HSV spinoffs of GM products being sent overseas like the final HSV Maloo was, should a business case become viable and the product design translate effectively.
With HSV needing to pivot away from big V8 cars with rear-wheel drive once the donor Commodore becomes a German-made re-tuned Opel, it's clear that we're going to see a whole new HSV.
While the Melbourne-based tuning division of the Walkinshaw Group will keep working with GM Holden, and will potentially have other new stuff to show us by 2018 (a hotter Astra to rival the Focus RS and a hardcore Trailblazer, maybe? We're just guessing), it's not going to send them elsewhere for a while.
This is despite its final run of vehicles such as the near-500kW W1 frankly being world beaters (watch our video evidence of it competing against BMW, Mercedes and Alfa here), and despite even the final Maloo going over to the UK, albeit in tiny numbers.
"I think the best way to describe it is we're very focused on what will be a transition into something new, and we see it as important in the short-term sticking close to home, making sure we have great product and business cases," HSV managing director Tim Jackson told us.
"Five years maybe, or ten. We'd like to think we can find ways and means to tap into a bigger market again… even though we are confident in our ability to make this transition, we don't want to underestimate it.”
Clearly HSV is bullish about its future, then. We asked Jackson to talk us through the vibe in HSV at the moment.
"I think that - this has been happening for a few years and people will start to see more of it come 2018 - as we started to broaden our view, what you try to do is take what you're good at and how do you apply that in different settings.
"... those skills sets are applicable in lots of different segments and settings. Our job is to identify where we can apply that skill where we can deliver a great vehicle, great value, and capture a customer.
"We see a lot of opportunity. Probably this year we’ll start talking about it more…"
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