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HSV launches most expensive Holden ever

Happy anniversary: The W427 celebrates 20 years of HSV.

Hand-built limited edition Holden Special Vehicles W427 hits the market at $150,000

20 Jun 2008

HOLDEN Special Vehicles today confirmed that its wild 7.0-litre W427 will finally reach dealers in August and that it will be priced at $150,000 – making it the most expensive Holden ever produced.

And, if the government’s proposed luxury car tax increase goes ahead, the price will balloon to $156,000.

Although HSV warned in May that the price could be as high as $170,000 to prepare potential buyers for any sticker shock, the final retail price is quite a step up from the $130,000-plus figure that HSV bandied around when the W427 was previewed at the Melbourne motor show in March.

Production numbers will also be higher than anticipated, with 427 to be built over the next two and a half years rather than the 200 quoted by HSV previously.

Performance, however, is in line with the March projection and makes the W427 the most powerful model ever offered by HSV.

20 center imageIt will be largely hand-built to order in a dedicated area at HSV’s Clayton headquarters at the rate of six cars a week and will only be sold in Australia (plus 10 in New Zealand).

HSV’s 57 local dealers will be allocated only one W427 each in the initial batch.

The Chevrolet Corvette 7.0-litre engine – 427 cubic inches in American language and therefore the reason for the model name – is hand-built by GM Powertrain in Detroit and produces 375kW of power at 6500rpm and 640Nm of torque at 5000rpm.

HSV chairman Tom Walkinshaw, who launched the vehicle to the media this morning, said that the project started two and a half years ago when former GM Holden chairman Denny Mooney offered the arrange supply of the LS7 engine from the US “to make something special”.

Mr Walkinshaw said it took only six months to decide the proceed with the project but that the development program to make the car reliable enough to offer a three-year factory warranty had been more complex that originally envisaged.

It required considerable internal upgrades to the Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual gearbox as well as the cooling system, limited slip differential, clutch, wheel bearings and brakes (which have six-piston front calipers with 50 per cent more pad area than the HSV GTS and two-piece 380x35mm floating rotors rather than 365x32mm single-piece rotors).

No automatic transmission is offered because, Mr Walkinshaw noted, racing cars do not have autos.

“This car is as good as anything in the world,” said Mr Walkinshaw, who said that the development benchmarks were the best performance cars from Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Audi.

“It holds its own against any of those,” he said. “It is one of the best four-door performance cars I’ve ever driven.”

He said the project was designed to celebrate HSV’s 20th anniversary and would only break-even, despite the higher price and production numbers.

The W427 rides 20mm lower than the GTS on which it is based, the springs are 50 per cent stiffer and the rear suspension bushes are stiffer.

Externally, the subtle differences include a slightly different nose, a three-piece carbon fibre rear spoiler and new 20-inch alloy wheels.

It can be ordered in five colours – white, red, black, silver and charcoal – but the only interior option is black with red leather highlights.

The only options are satellite navigation, rear DVD player and sunroof, but buyers can also pay an extra $500 to select their own build number.

Read more:

HSV to price W427 above $150K

Exclusive new HSV W427 is hot to trot

The Road to Recovery podcast series

GoAuto can help you buy a new W427

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