The Holden V8 is set to disappear from showrooms for the first time since 1968, and the new Commodore — if it gets built — will be a front-wheel-drive car with about as much pizzazz as a Toyota Camry.
The confidential SA Government report into Holden’s manufacturing future — leaked to the Adelaide Advertiser — makes grim reading for Holden fans.
It says the company is not likely to have a rear-wheel-drive car — and therefore a V8 — beyond 2016, or 2018 at a stretch.
"The true impact of not retaining this offering is not clear. However GMH is likely to experience some sales erosion sand migration to other brands," said the report prepared by University of Adelaide Professor Goran Roos for the SA Government.
When the Falcon and its performance models bow out in 2016, Ford will import the Mustang coupe from the US to appeal to the enthusiast market.
"The next gen model mix also excludes the ute variant," the report said, confirming a News Corp Australia exclusive from a fortnight ago.
If Holden keeps making cars in Australia from 2016 to 2022 it will be the first time since the first ever Holden — the 1948 48-215 "FX" — that its flagship model will be front-wheel-drive.
The front-wheel-drive car that Holden says it will call the "Commodore" will be made with mostly imported parts, the report says, putting further pressure on local parts suppliers.
That in turn is expected to force Toyota Australia’s hand with a factory closure in 2017, a year after Holden and when the Camry model cycle is due to come to an end.
This reporter is on Twitter: @JoshuaDowling