Charlene Spiteri and HRT drivers James Courtney (l) & Garth Tander (r) Photo: Joshua Dowling
The unique matte-white paintjob of the fastest Holden Commodore ever made...
... the Holden Racing Team’s 2013 V8 Supercar – was designed by a woman.
Holden colour and trim designer Charlene Spiteri, who drives a Holden Barina, normally spends her week working on the Commodore’s interior upholstery and exterior colours.
But the Melbourne RMIT graduate in textile design has also worked on the designs of the last six Holden Racing Team race cars – in her own time after hours. “It’s a labour of love,” she told News Limited.
Although matte paint has appeared on exotic supercars, and even a $32,000 Hyundai coupe, the matte white finish on the 2013 HRT Commdore is the believed to the first on a V8 Supercar. The new livery also marks the return of the Holden lion on the bonnet since 2009.
“Matte paint is a trend in performance cars these days,” says Spiteri. “You see it on Lamborghinis and BMWs and there’s no reason we shouldn’t put it on our best Commodore. Matte paint is the elite of exterior paint. The technology has improved to the point that we can finally put it on the race car.”
But Holden says there are no plans to use matte paint on its road cars anytime soon. Unlike some matte finish cars (which reflect 20 per cent of light as opposed to 80 per cent on a gloss finish), the HRT Commodore racer is painted rather tan covered in adhesive wrap.
“Contrary to perception, although has a silky finish, it’s still just as slippery through the air as a gloss paint,” Spiteri said. “The boys have nothing to worry about.”
Spiteri has done the last six HRT cars but she's most proud of this one. “They’ve all been awesome but this is my favourite. When people see it at the track I think they’ll take a second look.”
This reporter is on Twitter: @JoshuaDowling