The Mazda3 last year ended the big Holden's long reign as Australia's best-selling car. But yesterday's release of the new Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) version of Elizabeth (South-Australian) made Commodore could at least slow the buying public's rush away from big cars.
According to figures based on Holden's claimed economy figures and fuel prices earlier this week the LPG Commodore costs its owner $8.62 per 100km, or $1722 over an average 20,000km year.
The most popular Mazda3 variant, the Neo, will cost $10.66 per 100km and $2312 over 20,000km.
But the purchase price of the Mazda, Australia's best-selling, is almost half that of the LPG Commodore $22,330 versus $42,490, though private buyers receive at $2000 LPG grant from the government.
The LPG models looks better next to the conventional $39,990 Commodore Omega, which has V6 petrol engine costing $11.57 per 100km and $2314 over 20,000km.
"The LPG Commodore range is a no-compromise prospect,'' Holden Chairman and Managing Director, Mike Devereux, said.
"With outstanding fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, cheaper fuel running costs than many small petrol cars and excellent driving characteristics, our customers will be able to enjoy the practicality and comfort of a large car without the large car fuel bills.
"We are committed to taking a leadership position with alternative fuels to make sure Commodore remains the smart vehicle choice for Australian motorists.''
Previous LPG Commodores ran a duel-fuel system that alternated between petrol and LPG. This one only uses on LPG so it can be tuned to run better.
There are more than 3300 service stations selling LPG in Australia, which with the car's 700km range means it’s possible to circumnavigate the continent.