The Vauxhall version of Holden's VE HSV Clubsport R8 is so close as to be generating its own gravitational field around the UK (hold on to your cider). It's yet another Australian-born teaser for the Pontiac G8, which will appear in the states sometime during the 385th season of "According to Jim." If we can survive another millennium (or so it will seem) of the unfunny Belushi brother, we'll may get a taste of what the VXR8 already has in its toybox. Of course, the most potent of Vauxhalls will get GM's LS2 producing 411 hp, while the G8 will likely get a 6.0-liter L76 producing 362 hp. If only we had a queen...
VXR8 media information
There was every reason to mourn the passing of the Monaro, but the Thunder from Down Under hasn't stopped yet...
What better to replace the 6.0-litre V8, rear-drive Aussie performance icon with than an all-new Antipodean muscle car. A car, in fact, just like the VXR8 - a car even more powerful and exciting than the Monaro.
The dramatic-looking new saloon is powered by the same 6.0-litre V8 as the outgoing Monaro VXR, but revisions have made it even more efficient. It now develops a massive 417PS and 550Nm of torque, giving it enough grunt to sprint from 0-60mph in just 4.9 seconds. No other supercar offers this sort of power for anywhere near the VXR8's bargain price of just £35,105.
Yet the VXR8, based on the Australian Holden VE HSV Clubsport R8, offers more in the way of practicality than the Monaro, with four doors and space for all the family.
Although practical, with a spacious boot, comfortable, long-legged cruising ability and luxuries such as climate control and leather trim, the VXR8 is certainly no softie. Driver aids such as the stability system and traction control can be turned off at the flick of a switch - perfect for drivers who want to hone their skills on a track day!
In response to customer demand, the VXR8 will also be the first VXR model to be offered with an automatic gearbox, but that doesn't mean that VXR shifted to being dull. Performance figures are hardly affected, and the auto's fuel economy is actually better than the manual's.
Satellite navigation and 20-inch wheels are among the options for those who want to make their VXR8 look more distinctive and help find their way to the best driving roads. Even with all the option boxes ticked however, the VXR8 is still around half the price of other cars with comparable performance. As all fast car fans know, Aussie rules - and here's why...
When was the last time you saw an Australian bloke drinking a half of lager? Never? That's because the Aussies don't do things by halves, and if you need proof, look no further than the VXR8. Beefy, muscular and well-toned, the feisty four-door wouldn't look out of place flexing its muscles among the beach crowd. Based on the elegant yet unassuming looks of the latest VE-Series Holden Commodore, VXR8 takes the clean lines of a well-proportioned saloon car and gives them a supercar touch. Neat styling features include a butch-looking front spoiler with extra mesh air intake, along with piercing round driving and foglamps set in unique, trapezoidal pods. Supercar-style cooling fins adorn the car's
flanks, while the wheelarches are flared outwards to give the appearance of stability and provide room for the huge tyres - 245/40 19s at the front, or 275/35 19s at the rear. If 19s are too weedy, 20-inch alloys developed by Walkinshaw Performance are available as an option at £2,500, along with a Walkinshaw developed exhaust system, which sounds even more brutal than the standard set-up and costs £950. At the rear, VXR8 comes with a twin-post rear wing, quadruple exhaust outlet pipes and unique 'afterburner' rear lights, which include the latest LED technology to not only look stealthily cool, but also offer greater safety by being faster to reach full brightness than standard bulbs.