July 4, 2013

Holden Picks Up a Lap Record at The Nürburgring

I'm sure it all started with Top Gear and Sabine Schmitz uttering the famous "I can do zat in a fan",  now everyone wants a 'Ring lap record,

Electric cars, vans and now, pick-up trucks.  
More accurately, UTES as these grandsons of the Chevy El Camino are called in Austraila and New Zealand,  the only places in the world where they exist.

So Holden, GM's antipodean subsidiary and the only remaining American car company manufacturing  in Australia after Ford's recent  departure,  travelled to literally the far side of the earth to get some of that Eifel glory.

Their weapon was the Holden VF UTE, specifically an SS-V Redline, a pick-up with 6 liter 360 hp engine that got "Nürburgring" suspension, steering and brakes.

The time?  8:19.47.  That's not too shabby for something with a truck bed.  The e46 M3 scored 8:22,  the first generation Cayman S was 8:25.    While the truck is available with a manual gearbox, it's interesting they chose the automatic for the record run.

Extra credit to Holden for including this Nürburgring love video, Save The Ring!

Why should you care if an Australian market only coupe pick-up holds the record as the fastest El Camino in Germany?   Well, the Holden VF Commodore SS is sold in the US as the Chevy SS with a 415 hp v8, RWD and a limited slip differential.

If they don't mess it up (5 sec's 0-60 with a 415 hp v8?  How much does it weigh?)  it might be a pretty cool sleeper.

(H/T Mike!)


  1. The Aussie ute predates the El Camino and Ranchero by about 20 years, so I think you have the grandparent relationship backwards there.

  2. What exactly makes an Aussie Ute anyway? Because 2 door, single row of seats pick-up trucks sure have been around a long time

  3. Ford haven't left Australia yet - they go in 2016.

  4. Fair question, but while Australia can't lay claim to the pickup, it did pioneer the 'coupe-utility', being a more comfortable and car-like vehicle with a tray and the direct ancestor of the ute in the video.

    Here is more information on the origins of the ute than any sane person could possibly wish for (the title of the article is somewhat misleading):


  5. Utes are based on cars. Not Trucks.

  6. Only one "f" in these Eifels.



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