Let me start by saying, this car is a lot of fun, and I mean a lot of fun. Something the size of a Benz S-Class SWB shouldn't be as quick as it is (or a hoot in the corners as it is), and when it goes, it sounds angrier than a bag full of spanked cats. You could spend all your Sundays chasing cafe owners on Ducatis down mountain ranges in a Caprice V and be in their mirrors all the way laughing out loud.
But that's not what Caprice owners buy them for. When the BF LTD bowed out in 2007, Holden's big cruiser had the chauffeur and locally made luxury car market all to itself, and a long line of white Caprices became a common sight outside Parliament House and restaurants where the suited set liked to dine. Well-equipped with a quality Bose stereo and DVD player, Holden really only changed the wheel designs and freshened the dash design in 2013 as well as offering an LPG 6-cylinder version as variations - what more could you do for a winning formula?
Would a 60kW power boost and similar amount of torque make a difference? Does an Irishman drink Guinness???
The WN2 upgrade gave the Pinstripe Express the ability to outrun some big car names. Fuel became PULP only, and it drank more of it, but who the hell cares when your 1800kg luxo barge rips up the quarter mile in 14 seconds and lets everyone know with a bellowing roar that you need to get out of its way real quick? Chauffeurs loved its "Bogan SS in a suit" demeanor and it took four suitcases and carry-ons in the boot too. Fuel? Goes just as well on aftermarket dual fuel LPG too - beautiful!
As well as having el cheapo Commodore parts and service prices, the big Holden is good on tyres too and rotated and balanced regularly with alignments - 90,000km out of a set of tyres is normal. Watch for the brake calipers to seize on high-kilometre cars (no rebuild kits - find new or wreckers ones) and coil packs can make an annoying miss.
Apart from some cream pseudo-suede strips that never stay clean, the interior of the Caprice is worry free, comfortable and roomy although the curious deletion of the rear seat cupholder to ones in the pull down centre section is a head scratcher.
The Caprice rides on a firmer suspension setting than its older WM-WN siblings, and the suspension is commonly known as FE1-and-a-half - a nod to the infamous kidney smashing FE2 police suspension on VN-VS Police BT1 optioned Commodores and SS Commodores. It has good balance, plenty of grip, well-weighted steering and a feeling you could chuck it into a power slide and power out of it easily. The WN2, as you have gathered by now, is a real drivers car and I've yet to have a driver in our airport transfer business say they don't like driving it.
Like all modern engines, don't skimp on oil quality - semi synthetic as a minimum and a well known brand preferably. Coolant is a ten year lifetime but change the brake fluid every two years.
This is a car where the only downside is its expensive thirst for premium fuel. Once you come to terms with that, it's a great car to have in your life.