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Paddle shifters will come, says HSV

In a flap: Customers and dealers are asking for paddle shifters, but HSV says it is waiting for the right time to introduce them.

HSV’s F-Gen cars lack paddle shifters, but customers are asking for them

HSV logo15 May 2013

By BARRY PARK

SNEAK a look behind the steering wheel of the Holden Special Vehicles range of Gen-F cars, and you’ll notice something is missing – paddle shifters.

Even though US buyers picking up a Chevrolet-badged Commodore will be able to change gears by simply flicking a paddle behind the steering wheel, HSV buyers must wait until the trick shifters finally get a nod for locally-made cars.

Yes, once again, despite feedback from dealers saying customers are asking for them, Holden’s go-fast division has failed to deliver what many of them want.

HSV director of sales and marketing, Tim Jackson, said there was a growing expectation that if a car-maker had a sports car, it also had to have paddle shifters.

“Paddle shifters is something we get asked about from the customer base, and when we think we’ve got the right solution we’ll put it in, but that is not in this generation (of) car,” Mr Jackson said.

“When we think they’re appropriate and when we think it’s the right time, we’ll look at it,” he said.

“We get feedback from our dealer group saying ‘Can we get paddle shifts, can we get paddle shifts’, but we’ve said on numerous occasions, we don’t speak about future product.

“It (paddle shifters) is only one of a mix of technologies that customers are asking about.” Also missing from this generation of HSV models is a rumoured transaxle gearbox, with HSV revealing it had looked at two separate options to fit between the rear wheels.

As well as an adaption of the Albins gearbox built in Ballarat and used in the V8 Supercars, Mr Jackson said HSV also investigated adopting a unit from British supplier Zeroshift.

However, he said the car-maker was constantly in talks with parts providers, and the transaxle gearbox would have added too much cost to the HSV-badged range.

“We didn’t want to end up with another W427,” Mr Jackson said, referring to the 2008 project that shoehorned a 7.0-litre V8 under the bonnet of a limited-run HSV model, which ended up costing more than $150,000 by the time it hit showrooms.

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