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HSV goes racing for India

Shipping out: The Walkinshaw-badged HSV race car destined for display in India is based on the ClubSport R8 and bears a strong resemblance to our own V8 Supercars.

Holden Special Vehicles sends two newly developed race cars to India

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HSV logo29 Oct 2012

HOLDEN Special Vehicles has developed a pair of race-specification ClubSport R8 sedans for a potential one-make series in India.

The two Commodore-based vehicles were created in collaboration with sister company Walkinshaw Racing and will be shipped to the sub-continent for a demonstration day in December.

HSV managing director Phil Harding said the company had designed and developed the test vehicles after identifying an “untapped” market in the fast-growing Indian market.

“There is an affluent business community in India which is passionate about high-performance cars and the potential to race them,” he said in a statement.

Mr Harding added that there is potential for similar one-make series in another two unnamed Asian markets beyond India.

“The beauty of the vehicle we have developed is that the initial set-up costs, as well as operating costs, are significantly below other vehicles of similar performance, so if you are running a one-make race series, the economics look pretty good,” he said.

The completion of development comes less than six months after commencement in May this year, with two vehicles having undergone “extensive” testing at Victoria’s Winton Raceway, driven by HRT driver and three-time Bathurst champion Garth Tander.

Despite the fast turn-around, Tander said the tests “surpassed my expectations”, with a fastest lap time on the twisty 3km circuit of 92 seconds – nine seconds shy of the V8 Supercar lap record.

HSV chassis engineer David Slater estimates the cars will get under 90 seconds after more testing on the chassis balance.

Both vehicles feature V8 Supercar-style front and rear fascias, a reinforced deck lid with rear wing, heated polycarbonate front windows and lightweight doors and bonnet (with boot pins).

Inside is an FIA approved six-point roll cage, race bucket seats with six-point harnesses and a V8 Supercar-style cockpit with custom centre console and switch panel.

The LS3 6.2-litre V8 under the hood develops 400kW of power and is matched to a Quaife six-speed close-ratio sequential gearbox – built to New Zealand Touring Car specifications – and a 9-inch twin-plate ceramic clutch.

The body sits on 18x9-inch race wheels wrapped in full racing slicks, DMS Racing shock absorbers and springs, ducted front V8 Supercar-style AP Racing callipers and 365mm front/350mm rear brake discs.

HSV chief engineer Joel Stoddart said he was keen to add a Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) as a push-to-pass to the next race car demonstrator vehicle.

“We have the parts and a supplier excited to work with us on this technology,” he said.

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