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  • What the Press said about the Monaro

    www.topgear.com
    Date: September 29th, 2004
    By: Tom Ford
    When they asked if I wanted to run a Vauxhall Monaro VXR as a longtemer, I fell about laughing. The Monaro is loud, uncouth and uncomplicated, with a 5.7-litre pushrod engine straight out of the old Corvette. It's rear-wheel drive, and has suspension that looks like I designed it. It's about as sophisticated as a ham sandwich. It is, in fact, the car equivalent of, er, me. And my favourite thing in the world is a good ham sandwich. I nearly tore their hands off at the wrist.
    I immediately noticed that it's built with distance in mind. Australian distance, this being a rebadged HSV Monaro from the land of Skippy and 1,000km pops-to-the-shops. Hence the big comfy seats, decent stereo and languid pace at a cruise. I have been given number 24, as is demonstrated by the under-bonnet plate (see picture, right). I'm pleased, as there shouldn't be more than 50 VXRs knocking about the UK, so I shouldn't be seeing any off at the lights anytime soon. Concerns about running such a big motor in a country with petrol prices as they are has caused some concern, but with interstellar gearing (85mph is roughly 2,000rpm in sixth), and a careful first 1,000 miles while running-in, the VXR has produced nearly 25mpg. True, my 90-mile daily commute is a lesson in long-distance cruising, but I'm really impressed.
    The second 1,000 miles has brought a slightly different story; if you kick that big unit into life you'll be seeing single figures for the mpg. Truth is, I just can't help it. The Monaro isn't a true driver's tool, being a bit big and floppy for serious racing, but, my God, is it fun. It's a muscle car, pure and simple. And I am loving every single minute of it. The only way I can think about it is that it's the Lotus Carlton of its generation. It's silly, but good. Not so good was a brush with four foreign blokes sliding out of a junction in Neasden after just 10 days of ownership. They clipped the nearside rear, sending me sideways through a set of traffic lights and my heart rate soaring. Nothing coming the other way, and only a damaged wheel, but it made me seriously angry. Luckily the folks at Vauxhall managed to get hold of a new wheel in time for a forthcoming photoshoot and checked the rear suspension. But I can't track the four blokes with no front bumper on their A6. Bum.
    • Arrived: August 2004
    • Price: £35,595
    • Mileage: 2,457
    • Test mpg: 23.2mpg
    • Recent costs: None
    • Recent problems: Bad drivers

  • #2
    www.topgear.com
    Date: November 10th, 2004
    By: Tom Ford
    After 4,000 miles we are still happy and pottering. Or rather roaring around in third pretending to be in NASCAR. I will mitigate that comment with a discovery: as long as you're rolling, it'll happily pull through roundabouts and junctions in fourth. It'll pull from 5-10mph, giving the kind of flexibility you get from gas turbines. It's like an auto. The only car I've driven of late that makes this thing feel limp is the mad 600bhp-plus Merc SL 65. Shame I can only restrain myself half the time; fuel economy is now below 20mpg. So far there are no quality niggles, which I was perhaps unfairly expecting, though a heavy clutch and London traffic is quite tiring. I now have a left thigh twice the size of my right. I've also had a speed camera warning device fitted in the shape of the weeny MicroPilot, which includes a laser sensor for mobile cameras. Fitting it was painless, but I'm getting earache from it bweep-bweeping madly about lasers. Apparently I'm being hosed with laser light all the way down the A1. We shall see how we get on in the coming months.
    • Arrived: August 2004
    • Price: £35,595
    • Mileage: 4,132
    • Test mpg: 19.9mpg
    • Recent costs: None
    • Recent problems: None

    Comment


    • #3
      www.topgear.com
      Date: Febuary21st, 2005
      By: Tom Ford
      Winter weather has proved one thing; Monaros are not all-weather cars. They are not the Subaru Imprezas of Australia and they are not built for Lincolnshire lanes with frozen puddles and ball-bearing-grip cow dung. The defining moment comes when, on the fourth roundabout of the day, you find yourself whacking a quarter-turn of lock for the fourth time. The fact that you're doing this in itself isn't that weird for such a powerful rear-driver - it's when you find that you do it without thinking, trying not to, with the traction control on.
      You don't have to be a muchly-mustachioed Poirot to work out the contributing factors: the Monaro is nearly through its first set of tyres at 11,552 miles, the tarmac is icy, and the traction control is the automotive equivalent of someone pulling on the handbrake.
      Luckily, we've seen our 10k service since the last time we spoke and KE04 is in rude health. The Vauxhall chaps even fixed my broken cupholder and wobbly centre-console lid. Still awaiting a full bill as they've never serviced at 10k yet, but it shouldn't be too harsh - we'll fill you in as and when. Meantime, we've sourced a louder exhaust from a company called Linden Special Vehicles in Wellingborough. Next update from the safety of earplugs!
      • Arrived: August 2004
      • Price: £35,595
      • Mileage: 11,552
      • Test mpg: 24.3
      • Recent costs: None
      • Recent problems: None

      Comment


      • #4
        Monaro, 6.0iV8 (LS2), www.topgear.com, 1/3/05

        www.topgear.com
        Date: March 1st, 2005
        By: Tom Ford
        Three average family saloon cars, six economical runabouts, ten Smart ForTwos... and a partridge in a pear tree. Quite possibly gingerly grasping at a credit card smoking white-hot with petrol receipts.
        Whichever way you spin it, a six-litre V8 is not born of parsimony; it was created to produce 400bhp and a gloopy throb of torque from between switched off and idle. That's right, the 5.7 litres and 382bhp of re-badged HSV they called the Vauxhall Monaro VXR MkI felt a bit Elton John, so they've fitted the six-litre GM V8 (the same one as in the latest Corvette) to titivate the chest wig back up to Hasselhoff standards. I can almost hear the local tyre shop guys rubbing their hands.
        It's not just the engine, either; the bonnet has gained a pair of nostrils worthy of a fat camel, plonked unceremoniously in the middle of a scowling face. Fair to say where the old Monaro looked a bit grumpy, the new car looks positively homicidal, and I caught at least two small children weeping hysterical tears on my drive and calling for their mothers to 'stop the monster'. Still, if you like people to glance in their rear-view mirror and see a vehicular incarnation of death bearing down, all the better. It certainly clears the outside lane of stragglers effectively.
        The remainder of the exterior is pretty much the same, apart from a new exhaust with two pairs of tailpipes either side of the necessarily reshaped rear valance, and new double-spoke wheels. These two things don't sit entirely comfortably. The quad pipes, though far better for symmetry, are still a bit Eighties showboat. Far better to have a simple pair of fat mortars either side than enter into some ours-is-more-fussy-than-yours game. And the new wheels simply aren't as cool as the previous model's five-spoke blades, which wouldn't have looked out of place mounted on Boudicca's most slash-and-burn war chariot. Still, on UK roads it makes people stop and stare - we're just not used to something like the VXR.
        Inside, nothing much has changed apart from some silver flashing around the centre console and forward binnacle, as well as all-leather seats. The dash-top oil pressure and voltage gauges have changed style and font, but you'd have to be quite **** to notice. Flick those various gauges into life via the ignition key and there's an instant change in the timbre of response from the exhaust. It sounds almost refined when compared to the original, raspy-throated 5.7-litre, although you still get the amusing back-and-forth rocking when you blip the throttle at standstill.
        The clutch is much softer too, with less-instant pick-up - not the greatest feeling when you've got a big car threading through London traffic. The gearbox also feels much more cosy; still hefty compared to any other car currently on the UK market, but still less robust - which is also not a good thing in a car whose personality is transmitted through its control surfaces.
        The powertrain delivers, though. That new six-litre pumps an easy 400bhp and 391lb ft of torque from an engine the size of my lounge, which might sound a lot, but really isn't when you look at the bhp-per-litre. A Honda Civic Type R gets nearly 200bhp from an engine a third of the size - the Monaro isn't exactly stressed out. But it delivers in a great sweat-free stroke of torque and power that sees the 6,000rpm redline all too quickly. Power slides are on at every roundabout, junction, curve and corner. All supremely easily collected thanks to a long wheelbase and decent steering. The traction control won't save you, though, so beware - you can get a Monaro sideways with the electronics all to attention.
        Clonking through the six-speed gearbox will see a car geared for familiar 80mph/2,000rpm sixth-gear toddling. It's comfy and quiet and has a great stereo - so much so, on a long trip it's a potential licence-loser. Want to make that point a little more clearly? Stretch far enough and the VXR will see the wrong side of 185mph and five-and-a-bit seconds to 62mph. It's big. It's fast. It's from the same people who make the Signum.
        Which is to say that the news isn't all good. The injection of an extra 300ccs and 28bhp isn't the real story behind the six-litre Monaro, because a whole raft of things has been changed. The simplified story is this: the six-litre car is known as the Pontiac GTO in the States, and to comply with several of the more bizarre prongs of American legislation to do with crash protection, the fuel tank has migrated northwards. Into the boot. This means that the fuel tank now takes up half of the boot's available volume, as well as securing a roll-cage all of its own in case you get rear-ended. So that's potentially 60 litres of fuel that's riding just over the rear-axle; a very effective liquid pendulum.
        It shows. There's a stretch on our test route where a left-hander switches back into a long right. In the six-litre car, with half a tank of fuel on board, the flip between radii brings a distressingly hefty movement from the rear axle, followed by continued loading after the suspension has pushed over. It feels as if the fuel is draining through the tank baffles and re-weighting the car. It also changes the 'feel' of the Monaro as fuel is used up. There's also hardly space for a Samsonite anymore. This is really not good.
        I'd like to be more horrible, but even given its faults the Monaro is a shiny little wonder in a world full of drab econo-boxes. But it has emigrated. Somehow the car has lost a little bit of its Australian-ness and become American. It's softer, more manageable and less inclined to corner. It's still a bargain for the big-muscle vibe - but the edge is duller. Then again, it has been said that 'only milk and orange juice should come in two-litre sizes', so I guess I'll take that extra 300ccs and burn my rubber the easy way.
        Score: 15/20
        We say: Muscles bulging like a cartoon superhero, but the six-litre is a little less mad than the image
        Price: £36,995
        On your drive for: £912pcm
        Performance: 0-60mph in 5.7secs, max speed 185mph+, 17.6mpg
        Tech: 5970cc V8, RWD, 400bhp, 391lb ft, 1680kg, 378g/km CO2

        Comment


        • #5
          Monaro, 6.0iV8 (LS2), www.autocar.co.uk, 5/4/05

          www.autocar.co.uk
          Date: April 5th, 2005
          By:
          History
          Quite where the Monaro moniker came from originally is hard to trace; rumour has it that in 1968 Australian home-brand Holden wanted to create a name that was similar but different to Chevrolet’s Camaro, and so Monaro was born. Today, wearing Vauxhall badges on its flanks in the UK, Holden in Oz or Pontiac GTO markings in the States, the Monaro is finally edging its way into western performance-car culture.
          Design and Engineering
          The £29,895 standard car comes with the Corvette C5’s 5.7-litre V8 with 349bhp, while in its latest guise the hotter VXR’s tuned 5.7 has been replaced by the Corvette C6’s 398bhp 6.0-litre LS2 V8, giving enough performance to make Ferrari drivers feel the heat for just £36,995. It’s hard to think of any other car that offers more bangs for your buck. On the other hand, 37 grand is still a lot to ask for a coupé with a Vauxhall badge. Only time will tell whether or not depreciation will ravage the Monaro’s reputation. One thing is for sure, although the Monaro may not be the car that single-handedly transforms Vauxhall’s image, in five years’ time it will surely be remembered as a crucial player in the Luton revolution.
          Last year 350 people bought Monaros, 50 of them VXRs. And since then, both the standard car and the VXR have been improved. The VXR’s 6.0-litre engine develops 398bhp at 6000rpm and 391lb ft of torque at 4400rpm, increases of 16bhp and 14lb ft over the previous 5.7-litre VXR. Modifications to the gear selector mechanism have also improved the shift quality, says Vauxhall, though the gearing remains unchanged, with sixth rated at 44.3mph per 1000rpm.
          Before signing off the chassis, Vauxhall took advice from a number of handling experts, including some learned engineers at Lotus. Luton’s marketeers won’t go the whole way and make a ‘handling by Lotus’ claim, but the message is clear. The new Monaro, reckons Vauxhall, behaves better in every way than its predecessor.
          For starters it now has higher-specification dampers at the rear. The engine itself weighs 20kg less than the 5.7. The steering and braking systems have both been modified, with new plumbing and different bushes in an attempt to improve the ride and handling. Even the wheels have been upgraded, not just because the new 19in items look better than before, but also because they reduce unsprung weight. Tyres remain the same; 245/35 ZR 19 Pirelli P- Zero Rosso front and rear.
          On the Road
          Individually, such modifications may not sound dramatic, but collectively they make a big difference to the VXR’s personality. It’s now a much sharper machine, and quicker against the clock. Unfortunately, the test car’s rear tyres were well past their best by the time we strapped the timing gear on, though it was far quicker than the 349bhp car we tested last year.
          Having made a poor getaway the VXR thundered to 60mph in 5.3sec, from 30-70mph in 4.3sec and to 100mph in 12.6sec. Not quite in BMW M5/Merc E55 territory, but not a million miles away. In-gear flexibility is sensational, 50-70mph taking just 10.2sec in top despite the long gearing. That’s over five seconds quicker than the 349bhp model.
          On an unusually wind-blown high-speed bowl it ran out of puff at 163mph in fifth and wouldn’t pull more than 152mph in sixth. On the flat, we’re convinced it would top 170mph, having clocked it at 163mph on the two-mile runway at Elvington airfield, at which point it was still accelerating.
          Subjectively, the new 6.0-litre engine is even more impressive than it is on paper. It’s smoother than the 5.7, delivers more urgent response everywhere, is fractionally more economical (though at 18.2mpg test average you’d hardly call the VXR frugal) and, best of all, revs 650rpm higher than before. The limiter is now set at 6700rpm and there’s a change-up light at 6200rpm. The gearchange, as predicted, is much improved, as are feel and bite from the brakes, though stopping power is far from the Monaro’s strongest suit, 70mph to zero requiring a lengthy 52.9sec.
          Chassis-wise it’s very much a case of the same, only better. The steering is crisper and suffers from less kickback over rough surfaces; the ride (already admirably smooth for such an aggressive car) is more compliant, and the handling 10 per cent cleaner. No, the VXR is still not quite in the M3’s league for raw cross-country dexterity, but on the other hand it’s a more soothing companion than the BMW.
          Living with the Car
          The VXR’s excellent seats, fine driving position, sound basic cabin design and marginally softer suspension make it a surprisingly relaxing car to drive. True, the interior doesn’t possess the sheen of an M3’s cabin, but in terms of space, build quality, ergonomic clarity and comfort it’s easily on a par. For equipment it’s unrivalled: you get cruise control, part-leather seats, climate control and a six-disc CD as standard. Add these to an M3 and they’d cost you thousands. Sadly the boot has been greatly reduced in size compared with before, from 370 to 245 litres, the fuel tank having been relocated for better crash safety.
          Where the VXR is less clever is running costs. It uses fuel in the manner you’d expect of a 6.0-litre V8, pumps out 360g of CO2 per kilometre, which puts it firmly in the 35 per cent company car tax bracket, and insurance is group 20. And as we intimated earlier, depreciation is an unknown; it’s difficult to see it holding its value like an M3.
          Verdict
          Score: 4/5
          As car enthusiasts we can’t help but be blown away by the new VXR. It’s a more convincing machine than its predecessor was in almost every way. Considering how good that car was and how highly we regarded it, it’s hard to see how Vauxhall has done it. And all for an extra £1000.
          How much?
          Price when new £36,995
          Price as tested £45,970
          How fast?
          0-30mph 2.3 sec
          0-60mph 5.3 sec
          0-100mph 12.6 sec
          0-150mph no data
          0-200mph no data
          30-70mph 4.3 sec
          0-400m 13.9/108 sec/mph
          0-1000m 24.6/138 sec/mph
          30-50mph in 3rd/4th 3.1/4.4 sec
          40-60mph in 4th/5th 4.3/5.6 sec
          50-70mph in 5th 5.6 sec
          60-0mph 2.9 sec
          Top speed 163 mph
          Noise at 70mph 78 dbA
          How thirsty?
          Test average 18.2 mpg
          Test best/worst 25.4/10.2 mpg
          Govt figures
          Combined/urban 18.5/12.2
          CO2 emissions 360 g/km
          How big?
          Length 4789 mm
          Width 1841 mm
          Height 1397 mm
          Wheelbase 2788 mm
          Weight 1677 kg
          Fuel tank 75 litres
          Engine
          Layout 8 cyls ,5967 cc
          Max power 398 bhp at no data
          Max torque 391 ftat no data
          Specific output no data
          Power to weight no data
          Installation no data
          Bore/stoke no data
          Compression ratio no data
          Valve gear no data, no data
          Ignition and fuel Unleaded
          Gearbox
          Type 6-speed Manual
          1st no data/no data
          2nd no data/no data
          3rd no data/no data
          4th no data/no data
          5th no data/no data
          6th no data/no data
          Final drive no data
          Suspension
          Front MacPherson struts, coil springs, anti-roll bar
          Rear multi-link, coil springs, anti-roll bar
          Steering
          Type rack and pinion
          Lock to lock 3
          Brakes
          Front 330mm vented discs
          Rear 315mm vented discs
          Wheel and tyres
          Size Front no data
          Size Rear no data
          Made of alloy
          Tyres Front 330mm vented discs
          Tyres Rear 315mm vented discs

          Comment


          • #6
            Monaro, 5.7iV8 (LS1), www.autoexpress.co.uk, 1/6/04

            www.autoexpress.co.uk
            Date: June 2004
            By: Owen Mildenhall
            While the VXR220 shows what can be done to spice up a nimble, lightweight yet powerful sports car, Vauxhall's second new VXR model represents the other end of the scale - a massive-engined, heavyweight muscle machine.
            The VXR version of the Australian-built Monaro retains the standard model's Chevrolet Corvette-sourced 5.6-litre V8 powerplant, but has been tuned by Vauxhall's Aussie cousin, Holden, to give even more brutal performance. The firm's Special Vehicles department has added revised air inlets and a sports exhaust to push out an extra 58bhp, delivering a healthy 382bhp in total - making this the most powerful production Vauxhall ever built.
            Yet while you notice a little more urge when behind the wheel, the big V8 retains the lazy, slow-revving nature of the standard car. With acres of torque, in-gear performance is impressive, and power builds from as low as 2,000rpm.
            That means there's little need to be rushing changes through the heavy gearbox, or exploiting the outer edges of the rev range - even though the throaty soundtrack provided by the free-flowing exhaust pipes tends to encourage you to hold each ratio a little longer than necessary!
            Inside, the VXR gets leather and Alcantara sports seats, as well as an oil pressure gauge and voltage indicator in a dash-mounted pod. Externally, side skirts, a front airdam and large rear spoiler distinguish the VXR from the standard version. In addition, 19-inch gunmetal alloys should ensure it looks butch enough next to a BMW M3.
            Sticky Pirelli rubber and stiffened springs aim to give sharper handling, but the old Omega-derived chassis still judders and twists over rough surfaces. And despite a faster steering rack, the Monaro's weight means it's not the sharpest coupé around. For those who have the skill and a test track at their disposal, wild, tyre-smoking oversteer is available on demand, though.
            But be careful, because this special Monaro will be more exclusive than an exotic Italian supercar. The VXR is a marketing ploy designed to launch the brand, and only 50 will be sold this year. It will be the Astra and Vectra VXR versions that will grab all the sales next year, and from our sample of this spicy duo, we think they'll be tasty.
            First Opinion
            As with the standard car, the VXR Monaro is a true Australian brute, with a lazy V8 engine and a classic rear-wheel-drive layout. While the styling changes give it a more aggressive look, the performance and handling improvements are not huge. So while it is unique, the £6,945 price premium makes this car seem a little expensive.

            Comment


            • #7
              Monaro, 6.0iV8 (LS2), Pictures - Static





              Comment


              • #8
                Monaro, 6.0iV8 (LS2), Pictures - Action






                Comment


                • #9
                  Monaro, 6.0iV8 (LS2), Pictures - Engine


                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Monaro, 6.0iV8 (LS2), Specification/Press Release

                    Technical Specification & Options

                    ENGINE
                    Layout V8
                    Construction Alloy block and cylinder heads, V-configuration, cross-bolted main bearings, OHV design with cross flow cylinder heads, 63mm dual stainless steel exhaust system with quad exit billrt aluminium tips
                    Fuel system Sequential fuel injection, distributorless ignition with coil-per-cylinder, twin knock control sensors
                    Engine capacity 5967cc
                    Bore 101.6mm
                    Stroke 92mm
                    Compression ratio 10.9 : 1
                    Power (bhp) 398 @ 6000rpm
                    Power (PS) 403 @ 6000rpm
                    Power (KW) 297 @ 6000rpm
                    Torque (Nm) 530 @ 4400rpm
                    Torque (lb ft) 391 @ 4400rpm
                    PERFORMANCE
                    0-60 mph 5.2 seconds
                    Top speed 180 mph
                    CHASSIS AND TRANSMISSION
                    Front suspension MacPherson strut with anti-roll bar
                    Rear suspension Control-link independent rear suspension with anti-roll bar
                    Transmission Six speed manual transmission
                    Other Limited slip differential, traction control
                    BRAKES
                    ABS
                    Front 330mm x 32mm, ventilated and grooved
                    Rear 315mm x 18mm, ventilated and grooved
                    Configuration Four wheel disc, ventilated front disc and finned caliper
                    WHEELS AND TYRES
                    Wheel size 8in x 19in
                    Tyre size 245/35R19
                    Tyre make Pirelli P Zero
                    Spare wheel alloy spacesaver
                    FUEL CONSUMPTION
                    Urban 11.6
                    Extra-Urban 24.9
                    Combined 17.6
                    CO2 384 g/km
                    Emission compliance Euro 2
                    Fuel tank capacity 70 litres
                    GEAR RATIOS
                    1st 2.66:1
                    2nd 1.78:1
                    3rd 1.30:1
                    4th 1.00:1
                    5th 0.74:1
                    6th 0.50:1
                    Final drive 3.46:1
                    EXTERNAL DIMENSIONS
                    Overall length 4798 mm, 188.9 in
                    Overall width 1841 mm, 72.5 in
                    Overall height 1397 mm, 55.0 in
                    Overall weight 1677 kg
                    Front track 1559 mm, 61.4 in
                    Rear track 1577 mm, 62.1 in
                    Wheelbase 2788 mm, 109.8 in
                    Turning circle 11 metres (kerb to kerb)
                    INTERNAL DIMENSIONS
                    Leg room (front) 1072 mm, 42.2 in
                    Leg room (rear) 942 mm, 37.1 in
                    Shoulder room (front) 1515 mm, 59.6 in
                    Shoulder room (rear) 1312mm, 51.7 in
                    Head room (front) 946 mm, 37.2 in
                    Head room (rear) 848 mm, 33.4 in
                    Hip room (front) 1472 mm, 60.0in
                    Hip room (rear) 1275 mm, 50.2 in
                    Loadspace 245 litres
                    SERVICING AND CUSTOMER CARE
                    Service interval 10,000 miles
                    Warranty One year unlimited mileage warranty with second and third year no-fee warranty to 60,000 miles
                    Vauxhall Assistance 12 months from first registration
                    OTR PRICE £36,995
                    COMFORT AND CONVENIENCE
                    Active front head restraints with height adjustment
                    Alloy pedal extensions
                    Automatic headlamps
                    Black leather sport seats (four seats)
                    Body colour electric door mirrors
                    Centre console compartment with 12V socket
                    Alloy billet quad exhaust tailpipes with stainless steel exhaust system
                    Concealed storage compartment in rear of transmission tunnel
                    Courtesy lamps on doors
                    Cruise control
                    Door storage bins
                    Driver and front passenger adjustable lumbar support
                    Driver and front passenger front and side airbags
                    Driver and passenger illuminated vanity mirrors
                    Eight-way electric front seat adjustment with driver’s seat memory
                    Electric front windows
                    Electrochromatic interior rear view mirror
                    Electronic Climate Control
                    Front foglamps
                    Front footwell lights
                    Front map reading lights
                    Height adjustable front seatbelts with pre-tensioners and force limiters
                    Leather front armrest
                    Leather gearknob and handbrake lever
                    Leather steering wheel trim
                    Lower door and transmission tunnel trimmed in black suede
                    Mobile phone concealing storage compartment
                    Rear parking distance sensors
                    Rear passenger compartment air vents
                    Satin chrome on gearknob, handbrake lever and door handles
                    Satin chrome rings around dashboard instruments
                    Seat and upper door trim in leather
                    Seatback map pockets
                    Stainless steel sillplates
                    Steering wheel height and reach adjustable
                    Tachometer, volt meter, oil pressure guage
                    Trip computer
                    Twin cupholders in instrument panel
                    Variable intermittent road speed sensitive windscreen wipers
                    AUDIO SYSTEM
                    Blaupunkt radio with in dash 6-disc CD multichanger
                    Steering wheel audio controls
                    10 speakers
                    SAFETY
                    Adjustable head restraints
                    Anti-submarining ramps
                    Centre mounted stop lamp
                    Child restraint anchor points
                    Driver and passenger airbags
                    Driver and passenger side impact airbags
                    Pyrotechnic seat belt pre-tensioners on the front seats
                    SECURITY
                    Alarm and immobiliser
                    Locking wheelbolts
                    Two stage central locking with deadlocks
                    COLOURS
                    Phantom Black (metallic)
                    Quicksilver (metallic)
                    Redhot (solid)
                    OPTIONS
                    Smoker packs (front and rear)
                    | Find | Watch | Follow |

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      History
                      MONARO – A PSYCHEDELIC SIXTIES ICON
                      • Original Holden Monaro debuted in 1968
                      • The first all-Australian sports car
                      • A benchmark design
                      Set against a backdrop of 2001: A Space Odyssey and to a soundtrack of Voodoo Child by Jimi Hendrix, the original Holden Monaro roared on to the scene in 1968. Achingly cool, Monaro was the first ever sports car to be built entirely in Australia for the Australian market.
                      The product of a nascent Holden design studio, Monaro was influenced directly by the trends of America. Not surprisingly it was semi-modelled on an American design, the Oldsmobile Toronado coupe – itself a hugely influential car. Monaro took its roofline, rear pillars and rear wheel arch blisters from the spectacular Toronado, mixed them with Holden’s own design cues and worked it all into a spectacular coupe, designed for the maximum ‘wow’ factor.
                      Looking and feeling like the muscle cars on which it was based, the 1968 Monaro featured a wide, gaping grille, leading into broad, powerful flanks. At the back there was an almost constant slope from its rear window to its boot lid. Sleek and suave, Monaro was the epitome of cool.
                      Under the wide and imposing bonnet the all-Australian coupe offered no fewer than 19 engine and transmission combinations, destined to give the kind of raw performance such a monumental design deserved.
                      Entered into the Sandown 3-hour race and the Hardie Ferodo 500 at Bathurst, Monaro became a formidable force in Enduro racing, collecting a one-two-three finish at Bathurst and a one-two victory at Sandown in its debut year.
                      With such a pedigree, Monaro easily and quickly lured customers from every part of the spectrum, each one seduced by its striking looks and enormous presence.
                      Its success was set to continue for the following 11 years through changes in design, tweaks in its set-up, lurid paint finishes and continued racing glories. However, 1979 was the last year that the Monaro name was used. Stifled by strict anti-pollution legislation in 1976, V8-powered cars began to fall from favour, leading to the all-Australian sports car’s demise in the late ’70s.
                      However, although Monaros had disappeared from Australia’s roads, they hadn’t disappeared from the Australian psyche. Those too young even to dream of owning a Monaro first time round, still hankered after the ultimate Australian sports car, and with the unveiling of the Holden Concept Coupe in 1998 at the Sydney Motor Show it seemed their dreams would come to fruition.
                      Incredibly, the designer, Michael Simcoe, and his team had worked on the concept in complete secret for months beforehand – after hours and at weekends – to create the car, persuading the head of engineering to cover all costs. Even more incredibly, Holden boss Jim Wiemels only found out about the concept’s existence three weeks before the Sydney Show, but after seeing it was determined to have it on the stand.
                      Based on the lines of the Holden VT Commodore, the Concept Coupe received rapturous applause at the Sydney Show. It caught everyone’s imagination and went on to become the next generation Monaro just 22 months after its Motor Show debut. The legend had been reborn.
                      From its inception to its current incarnation Monaro represents the pinnacle of style and performance; never before or since has a car had such an enormous impact on the Australian people. Small wonder then, that it has icon status in its homeland, and is loved world wide.
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                      • #12
                        Design
                        LOOKING GOOD, INSIDE AND OUT
                        • New bonnet vents increase aggressive visual appeal
                        • Seats four adults comfortably
                        • Dynamic and distinctive design
                        • Premium performance-oriented interior
                        Big and beautiful, Monaro VXR looks and feels every inch the luxury performance coupe. Making full use of top quality materials it offers the car enthusiast the very best of sports car power, opulence and looks, with the assurance of longevity and reliability.
                        Based heavily on the Holden VT Commodore, Monaro designer Mike Simcoe worked hard to get the proportions right and generate the perfect curves. The sleek, expressive styling is testament to his constant re-evaluation and effort.
                        No-one had any complaints about the look of the previous Monaro VXR, so changes have been kept to a minimum with only the addition of two ‘nostril’ bonnet vents, new wheels and the quad tailpipes marking out the new model visually.
                        Added together the look encompasses a potent on-road presence from any angle, but Monaro’s low lines and stylishly truncated rear end are especially effective in side profile, and ooze aerodynamic purpose.
                        Undeniably slick outside, the inside of the Monaro is just as exciting. With full double-stitched leather as standard, Monaro is specified to offer the very best in comfort, style and ergonomics.
                        Eight-way electrically adjustable seats in front are contoured to cosset the driver and front passenger completely. The two rear seats, which will easily accommodate two adults, are also fashioned for comfort and a close fit, ensuring high ride quality all round. An electric slide-forward mechanism allows ready access to the rear seats.
                        Instrument clusters, highlighted by satin silver binnacle rings, bring the attention back to front of the cabin. Two extra dials – showing oil pressure and voltage output – are housed in their own binnacle on top of the centre console. A smart four-spoke steering wheel matches the leather on the handbrake and gear lever, increasing the car’s coherent feel.
                        The smoothly integrated instrument panel features modern controls and graphics and sits beneath a large screen, multi-function display, which incorporates climate control, infotainment and trip computer information. A six-disc CD changer is standard, as is a 10-speaker sound system, further enhancing the interior.
                        Other, driver-oriented features include cruise control, to make long motorway journeys less dreary. Plus, as you won’t want to chance denting Monaro’s beautiful lines, rear park assist is also a standard feature.
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                        • #13
                          Market
                          POUNDING THE OPPOSITION
                          • A superb driving dynamics with a practical twist
                          • Power for £ supremacy
                          • A car aficionado’s dream
                          Bored with the bewinged, over-turboed Japanese saloons and underpowered, overpriced German coupes? Then go and play by Aussie rules, with the Monaro VXR. Aimed squarely at the car enthusiast, the Monaro VXR is the perfect antidote to the computer game-like electronically controlled dynamics of modern performance cars. Everyone will be impressed by its stunning good looks, while petrolheads will be hypnotised by its sheer power and ability.
                          In its limited market place, nothing else can offer the Monaro VXR’s combination of sheer power and metal for the money. In terms of coupes, the Jaguar XKR also offers a 400bhp V8 (albeit a supercharged 4.2 versus the Monaro’s 6.0-litre) but costs a massive £23,000 more. The 362bhp Mercedes CLK 55 AMG is a fraction cheaper at £58,960, and the BMW M3 gets closer still on price (at £41,150) but can only offer 343bhp. Even Mitsubishi’s highly-tuned, 2-litre, 4-cylinder Lancer EVO FQ400 costs a massive £46,999, and TVR’s 390bhp Tuscan S is a surprisingly pricey £48,800.
                          This combination of value and performance meant that the outgoing Monaro VXR was a sell-out success, with all the production run of 50 cars being snapped up within three months of going on sale. This led to some disappointed buyers, so Vauxhall is increasing the number of new VXRs which will be brought in to 300 over the next 18 months.
                          Although this will mean that more drivers get to experience the brute force of the flagship VXR, it will still be a rare and exclusive beast, especially compared to some rivals. Expected to find particular favour with affluent, 30-something, car-aware men, Monaro VXR has enormous power, drivability and presence but will easily seat four adults in comfort. So, as well as being a terrifically good drive – thanks in no small way to its 6.0-litre V8 engine and RWD set-up – it’s also extremely practical.
                          The perfect choice for grown-ups who haven’t quite grown up, Monaro offers the very best of all worlds. It can be a well-set-up head turner with an unstressed V8 providing effortless performance, or a track day tool which will play to win with supercars, and provide plenty of sideways handling action on demand.
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                          • #14
                            Driving and Dynamics
                            THE WHIZZER OF OZ – 404 PS MONARO VXR
                            • Musclecar for real enthusiasts
                            • 6.0 litre V8 with RWD for purest driving experience
                            • Exceptional performance from legendary ‘small block’ V8
                            There’s no doubt that modern front wheel drive cars with compact engines suit the majority of British motorists. But the real enthusiast will always crave a car which constantly rewards and challenges the driver, and nothing but a musclecar will do the job. With 404PS and a rumble from the exhaust which could only come from a big V8, the Monaro is the perfect antidote to mundane motoring.
                            Born out of the muscle car dream, Monaro VXR is offered with a huge, 6.0 litre V8 engine, powerful enough to catapult the car to 60mph in just over five seconds and onto a top speed of around 180mph. With the new high-output 6.0-litre LS2 powerplant, which recently made its debut in the Corvette C6, it produces 404PS (up from the last model’s 387PS) and a massive 530Nm of torque (compared to 510Nm). The power behind the Monaro VXR is the legendary small block V8 in its latest LS2 form. The engine is celebrating 50 years of production and an astonishing statistic - more than 90 million have been produced, representing 27 billion horsepower. The small-block has been repeatedly adapted to new situations, and has been used in everything from supercars to pick-up trucks.
                            In this application, the engine’s performance is directed through a close ratio, six-speed manual gearbox, designed to let the driver make the most of the engine’s flexibility and power. Electronic throttle control and the immense torque of the new powerplant means that gearchanges are hardly necessary, but the choice of well-spaced ratios ensures that the V8 can always be kept ‘on the boil’ for maximum performance. Alternatively, slot into sixth and the Monaro becomes a relaxed, barely-stressed cruiser which can return surprising economy.
                            And, just as importantly, the Monaro sounds great at any speed. The underneath of the car has been completely redesigned to allow the new exhaust to breathe more freely with the addition of an extra pair of tailpipes. Besides making the engine work more efficiently, it also creates a burble with is even more distinctive than the previous Monaro’s.
                            Designed in the muscle car tradition, Monaro is rear-wheel-drive. This equates to an exciting, inspiring drive with superb handling and – with standard switchable traction control – the option of serious fun. If anyone ever wanted to learn how to steer using the throttle, this is the car to show them.
                            But, while fun is available on tap, precautions have been taken against over indulgence without installing the sort of nannying electronics which can be the bane of an enthusiastic driver’s life. A limited slip differential improves traction, stability and handling, and allows more control of the back end, both improving safety and simultaneously ensuring Monaro is a fully fledged driver’s car. In alliance with the newly-revised suspension – offering sports springs at both ends and gas pressure dampers at the rear – Monaro simply feels awesome and inspirational on the open road.
                            Nineteen inch multispoke ‘Chrome Shadow’ wheels shod with wide, low profile, 235/35 19 tyres transmit all this engineering and technology to the road giving Monaro precise steering response and predictability combined with maximum cornering tractability. And of course they look great too!
                            When it comes to stopping the car, nothing but the best would do – as you’d expect since it will be required to haul the Monaro down from speeds above 180mph. Using the same braking system as the latest version of GM’s other supercar - the Corvette C6 – the Monaro uses new 330mm vented and grooved discs at the front and 315mm rotors at the rear. These ensure that the middle pedal always has a reassuring feel
                            and bite, even after constant hard use. As a finishing touch, the bright red callipers are embossed with the VXR logo.
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                            • #15
                              Value for Money
                              SUPERCAR PERFORMANCE – SALOON PRICES
                              • 6.0-litre V8 and 404PS for £36,995
                              • High specification
                              The Monaro VXR’s raison de etre is a dynamic driving experience, but thanks to the global resources of General Motors, it also represents amazing value for money. For £36,995 the enthusiast will be getting an awful lot of car, with rivals costing twice as much for the same power output. In fact the only cars which can get close to having similar power outputs for the same amount of money have engines which have half the cylinders and a third of the capacity!
                              And don’t think the Monaro VXR has been stripped of equipment in order to get the price lower. Inside and out the designers worked hard to ensure Monaro has the ambience of a luxury car.
                              Externally, 19 inch alloy wheels fill meaty wheel arches, giving Monaro an almost menacing feel, while smooth, sleek lines flow from front to rear, creating feelings of fluidity and dynamism. Quad-pipe exhaust system punctuates Monaro’s blunt rear end.
                              Inside the list of standard equipment is all but endless – full leather interior; cruise control; power mirrors, sun roof and windows; ‘intelligent’ wipers; rear park assist; automatic head lamps; trip computer; 10-speaker, six CD sound system; eight-way, electrically adjustable front seats; electric front seat slide for rear access; dual zone climate control; alloy pedals; and metal finish dash, door handles and sill plates.
                              Changes for the new model include a new double-stitched leather interior, uprated sport suspension, drive-by-wire throttle control and larger brakes taken from the Corvette C6.
                              Equally, safety has not been sidelined to cut costs. Monaro VXR offers driver and passenger airbags; driver and passenger side impact airbags; seat belt pre-tensioners; anti-submarining ramps; child restraint anchor points; quick response LED centre brake light; low fuel, high engine temperature and rear light failure warnings; steering wheel-mounted sound system controls; and active front head restraints and seat backs.
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