Well, look at that. General Motors' Australian subsidiary Holden dropped the first photos of their new Holden Commodore tonight, just like we expected.
Like most Australian market sedans, it looks incredibly boring, but it will hopefully make up for that with what's under the hood. (Reader Dante Gonxhja basically nailed it when he compared it to an Acura RL.) No word on specs yet, but I assume it's going to have a tire-murdering V8 engine of some sort.
Why are we writing about this on Jalopnik, which tends to be an America-centric car website? Lots of reasons. For one, I like big, rear-wheel-drive V8 Aussie sedans. Also, the Commodore is almost certain to come to the U.S. as the next
Pontiac G8 Chevrolet SS. GM even says so in their news release.
Another reason is that while the Commodore is an icon in its native Australia — as is its direct competitor, the Ford Falcon — this VF Commodore may be the last one ever. As we reported earlier today, sales of these big RWD sedans have been dwindling in their homeland.
This story on Australia's News Limited has a chart that shows just how far the two cars have fallen since their sales heyday in the mid 1990s. They report that when this VF Commodore ceases production in 2016, "it will be replaced by a large front-drive sedan based on new global underpinnings that will be adapted for local conditions."
I hope they're wrong. A GM managing director disagreed, claiming that the Commodore will continue into 2017, but he wouldn't say whether it would keep its RWD architecture.
I'm sure going FWD makes more sense for GM and for consumers who want smaller cars that are better on gas, but it will be a sad day for performance lovers everywhere. And I have to wonder what will happen to one of my favorite racing series, Australian V8 Supercars, if the Commodore and Falcon cease to be. I have no doubt that it will continue on, perhaps with purpose-built cars like NASCAR, but it will be a whole lot special.
Will you mourn the death of the Aussie V8 sedans?
Photos credit GM