1 Mar 1976
Holden predicted big things for the sleek Torana Hatchback on its early ’76 launch, but Australians just didn’t buy into it.
A shallow load area didn’t help the Hatchback’s cause. Otherwise there’s little to distinguish the LX from its LH predecessor save for a new grille and revised trim.
Engine outputs varied, with the revised XT4 series from July ’76-onwards (which needed to comply with stricter anti-pollution certification), in brackets.
The 2.8: 78kW/224Nm (78/87kW man/auto) 3.3: 82kW/258Nm (81/88kW man/auto) 4.2 V8: 130kW/325Nm (120kW) and 5.0 V8: 186kW/434Nm (161kW).
The Hatchback, in SL and SS varieties, was only available in the larger ‘six’ and V8s.
Meanwhile the 76kW/156Nm LX Torana 1.9 (1900) was short-lived, replaced in November ’76 by the Sunbird, with its ‘clean’ 72kW/157Nm 1.9-litre four-cylinder engine and Radial Tuned Suspension (RTS) – changes to suspension and steering geometry that greatly improved handling and ride characteristics.
The overwhelming critical acclaim of RTS prompted it to spread across all Holdens during the next few years, including in the LX Torana from March ’77.
From September ’77 the 5.0-litre V8 SL/R 5000 and SS Hatchback gained the Bathurst-inspired A9X option, with a modified engine, bolted wheel arches, a bonnet scoop, a Salisbury differential, four-wheel disc brakes and other go-faster bits.
A total of 65,977 LX cars were produced, including Sunbirds.