Anyone holding out for a discounted price on a new Chevrolet Silverado 1500 pick-up due to the establishment of General Motors Specialty Vehicles (GMSV) – under the direct control of Detroit – may be out of luck.
Even though General Motors now sells directly to Australian showrooms – rather than exporting cars to Holden Special Vehicles via an independent international distributor which previously charged a substantial handling fee – local dealers have been told the RRP will remain unchanged.
Industry insiders had forecast a price cut of up to $10,000, however it seems GMSV has elected to retain the existing RRP for the Chevrolet Silverado LTZ Premium of $114,900 plus on-road costs, or about $120,000 drive-away.
Although the Melbourne-based Walkinshaw Automotive Group (the parent company of HSV) remains responsible for the local engineering and conversion work of the US-sourced vehicles from left- to right-hand drive, the firm is no longer the importer and distributor of Chevrolet vehicles.
Instead, Walkinshaw now does the engineering and conversion work and charges General Motors on a per-vehicle basis, as it does with Ram pick-ups.
The new arrangements mean General Motors sets the retail prices of its vehicles and pays Walkinshaw a conversion fee.
Missing is the fee previously charged by the middle agent between GM and HSV. Despite this figure likely to add up to $10,000 to the RRP, the price difference is going to be pocketed by General Motors.
While more affordable versions – and off-road editions – of the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 pick-up may be added at a later date, for now the LTZ Premium remains the single model grade available locally.
There is one small difference: vehicles imported by HSV had black Chevrolet bow tie badging. Examples imported by General Motors will have original gold Chevrolet bow tie badging.
GMSV today confirmed it has established and started shipping cars to 50 dealers across Australia, most of whom were former Holden or HSV representatives. However, the number of outlets is smaller than the 65 showrooms HSV had at its peak.
GMSV and Holden dealer sources have confirmed there will be a seamless transition from the old and new supply of vehicles. Orders taken today are due to be filled by late this year or early next year, say dealer sources.
The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ Premium edition continues as is, and will be joined by the locally-converted Chevrolet Silverado 2500 and the factory-built right-hand-drive Corvette sports car in the second half of 2021.
CarAdvice asked GMSV the following questions and these were the responses in full:
Q: What does GMSV's establishment and direct factory sourcing mean for pricing (of the Silverado 1500 LTZ Premium) in Australia?
GMSV: We anticipate there will be significant demand for the new range of GMSV product and are confident of offering great vehicles that are competitive in their segments.
Q: Will the Chevrolet 1500 range expand beyond the current LTZ Premium?
GMSV: Today we are focusing on the announcement of the new GMSV dealer network and confirmation of Silverado 1500, Silverado 2500 and Corvette C8 (the latter two due in the second half of 2021). As such, we don’t have any further comment to make with regards to other possible models at this point in time.
Q: Will there be an interruption to dealer stock with the changeover from HSV sourced vehicles and GM sourced vehicles?
GMSV: Right now products are in the process of being distributed to the GMSV dealer network.
Q: Will GMSV add the Chevrolet Tahoe to the local line-up at some point?
GMSV: We will continue to examine opportunities to bring vehicles to Australia and New Zealand that we believe can compete strongly in their segments. We don’t have anything to announce at the moment.
Q: Can we please get a comment about the future prospects of the electric Hummer coming to Australia?
GMSV: We are glad there is so much excitement around the GMC Hummer EV. It is another vehicle in the General Motors line-up that demonstrates our vision of an all-electric future. GMSV is not making announcements about GMC Hummer EV at this stage.
Q: Can we please get a comment about the future prospects of certain Cadillac models coming to Australia?
GMSV: We aren’t making any announcements about Cadillac. Our focus is on bringing the Chevrolet Silverado and the Chevrolet Corvette successfully to market.