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Holden outs Supercar based on imported Commodore

Big blower: Ahead of its official 2019 introduction, Triple Eight Race Engineering will enter a twin-turbo V6-powered Commodore Supercar in selected rounds next season.

2018 Supercars debut set for Holden NG Commodore, Triple 8 to test twin-turbo V6


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9 Jun 2017

HOLDEN has released computer-generated images of its next-generation Commodore racecar, with the imported NG model set to enter the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship from next season.

Penned by General Motors (GM) Australia exterior design manager Peter Hughes, the concept is styled to have presence on and off the track.

Using a process called Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) modelling – which includes advanced simulation and aerodynamic evaluation – Mr Hughes transformed the road-going sedan into a track-ready weapon.

A naturally aspirated V8 petrol engine will remain under the bonnet of the Commodore Supercar for the 2018 season, which Holden says will help teams easily make the transition to the new body.

However, the bent eight will carry on only for next year, with all of the Red Lion's entrants packing a twin-turbocharged V6 from 2019 that satisfies Supercars’ stricter Gen 2 racing regulations.

Ahead of its race debut, the new unit is currently being developed in conjunction with the GM Performance and Racing Center in Pontiac, Michigan.

Nevertheless, in a twist, Triple Eight Race Engineering – Holden’s official racing team – is presently in conversation with Supercars over whether it can run a V6-powered Commodore as a wild-card entry for selected rounds in the 2018 season.

If approved, such an exercise would allow the technical departments from the relevant parties to collaborate and ensure the smaller powerplant provides the same level of performance as the atmo V8.

After the next season concludes, Holden says all race teams will have access to the blown V6 “via a favourable leasing program”.

“Our sport prides itself on Supercars being the closest competition in the world, and the phased introduction of the next-generation Commodore will ensure that is maintained,” Triple Eight Race Engineering team principal Roland Dane said.

Supercars Australia chief executive officer James Warburton also heaped praise on Holden for its NG Commodore roll-out and Gen 2-compliant engine development programs.

“It is a pragmatic and sensible approach by Holden and Triple Eight Race Engineering in introducing the new Commodore and a twin-turbocharged V6-powered engine to the sport,” he said.

“Importantly it is a win for all the current teams in terms of the simplicity and market relevance for an easy transition to the new Commodore in 2018.

“This phased introduction sets a clear path forward for not only Holden but existing and new manufacturers in the sport.” Set to undergo Supercars aerodynamic validation in the fourth quarter of this year, the first NG Commodore Supercar is already under construction.

Production of the Australian-built VFII Commodore will cease in October, with Holden preparing to launch its imported successor early next year in liftback sedan, wagon and high-rider body styles.

The NG Commodore will arrive as a rebadged version of the European-sourced Opel Insignia, with flagship variants to be propelled by a 230kW/370Nm 3.6-litre V6 that sends power to all four wheels via a nine-speed automatic transmission.

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