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First look: ‘Brock’ Commodore makes comeback
HDT previews new-age VE ‘Blue Meanie’ with 350kW and retro looks
12 Oct 2009
A HIGH-ranking executive from a major automotive retail chain bought the first retro-styled limited-edition HDT Special Vehicles Group A SS on the spot at its public preview at Bathurst last week ahead of its November 1 launch.
Designed as a tribute to Peter Brock’s original VK Commodore HDT SS Group A homologation car from 1985, the new-generation VE Commodore-based ‘Blue Meanie’ caused a ripple when it was unveiled by the Sydney-based specialty car modifier at Mount Panorama ahead of the Supercheap Auto 1000 at the weekend.
The female executive from a major V8 Supercar sponsor approached HDT representatives during the preview and agreed to pay more than $70,000 for the display car, ‘Blue Meanie’ 001.
The original Brock Group A SS was built in collaboration with Holden to qualify for the 1980s Group A racing regulations. A total of 502 were said to have been built, just exceeding the minimum 500 required for series production rules.
Car collectors regard the original as one of Brock’s finest cars, and examples regularly exceed $150,000 at auction.
The modern iteration – developed without the co-operation of Holden – comes complete with a number of signature styling highlights taken from the 1985 car, including blue paint matched to the original ‘Formula Blue’, letter-box-style grille, rear spoiler, large reversed bonnet scoop and white aero wheels – an option on the original.
The new HDT SS Group A is said to generate 350kW – 70kW more than the standard 6.0-litre Holden V8 Commodore SS engine on which it is based.
This power rating is 152kW above the 1985 original’s 198kW from its de-stroked 5.0-litre V8, and 25kW more than official hot shop Holden Special Vehicle’s most powerful offering, the 6.2-litre 325kW E2 Series GTS.
The first of 250 examples that HDT hopes to build was unveiled at Bathurst by HDT owner and avid collector of all things Brock, Peter Champion, and the nine-time Bathurst winner’s former partner, Bev Brock.
Mr Champion owns the largest collection of original Brock Holden Dealer Team Commodores – both road cars and race cars – which he displays at his museum at Rockhampton.
The wealthy mining contractor and one-time friend of Brock has spent millions keeping the Brock legend alive, to the point of buying and reviving the HDT franchise after Brock’s death in a road rally in 2007.
Since then, HDT has built a series of modified VE Commodore SS cars under the Heritage Retro umbrella, inspired by original VC and VH Brock Commodore models from HDT.
The latest VK-inspired HDT vehicle can be built to order, according to a range of modifications on offer from HDT.
However, the customer needs to buy and supply their own VE Commodore SS to receive the HDT treatment, which starts with the blue paint job, body kit and white-painted ‘aero’ wheels. The bonnet scoop as featured on the show car is listed as an option.
Basic 350kW engine modifications include an HDT camshaft, cool-air inlet and sports exhaust. If that’s not enough, the customer can also order a supercharger at extra cost.
Like the 1985 original, the new Group A SS gets Bilstein shocks, but with modern monotube gas dampers. Coil-over struts are also available as an add-on, along with a performance brake package.
Another option is a leather interior in a variety of colours and HDT logo monograms, along with a variety of interior trim enhancements, such as carbon-fibre dash inserts.
Full price details of the various modification packages available from HDT are yet to be formally announced (HDT has done a magazine deal to coincide with the launch).
However, reports from the Bathurst preview suggest the base package, including the cost of a new VE Commodore SS, would start from about $62,000 and range up to about $85,000 for the lot.
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