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Holden revs up for a Monaro invasion
By MIKE DUFFY
08nov03

HOLDEN'S $1 billion-a-year coup to ship 18,000 Pontiac GTO-badged Monaro coupes to the US is only the start of a massive global export plan being hatched by General Motors.

The Detroit-based car giant last night revealed a strategy to sell up to 100,000 South Australian-made Commodore utilities in the US each year, and to export the vehicle throughout South-East Asia.
GM's group vice-president in charge of advanced vehicle development, Mark T. Hogan, said negotiations were under way with the powerful Union of Automotive Workers to increase the agreed annual allocation of Monaros to the US and to ship in the utility.

To meet such export demand, Holden's plant at Elizabeth would need to expand weekend shifts and hire hundreds of additional workers. A second assembly line is being considered to carry the extra production.

Mr Hogan declared the Pontiac GTO "a definite smash hit" at its official launch here yesterday, even before the first shipment of 450 re-badged Monaros docks in the US after the voyage from Outer Harbor.

US motoring critics have lavished praise on the GTO after test-driving the car in the Californian mountains.

Pontiac already holds 1100 deposit-paid orders for the vehicle, which marks the return of a legendary American muscle car.

More than 500,000 of the original US-built GTO were sold between 1964 and 1974 and the car and its name have become synonymous with the popular culture of the time.

Today's GTO, featuring a 253kW, 5.7-litre V8 engine, goes on sale on December 1 for $45,993.

"We have a great deal of confidence in the car. It's a great vehicle," Mr Hogan said. "Clearly, it will be a definite smash hit of 2004.

"We have 2800 Pontiac dealers holding orders for the GTO and the car is every bit as good as promised it would be.

"If we could get unlimited supply, I would say we could sell a minimum of 40,000, and possibly as many as 80,000 units.

"Enthusiasts who remember with reverence the great GTO of the past will love the new car and so will a new generation of performance car enthusiasts.

"Holden has done a fantastic job engineering Monaro and, in conjunction with Pontiac engineers, creating the GTO.

"Our Australian arm is viewed globally as a major force in the automotive world. All that is a real credit to the people of Adelaide and we are very proud of the job Holden has done."

Mr Hogan said he had visited Holden in Australia two weeks ago and had been shown the next generation Commodore ute.

"It's simply stunning. I am very keen to bring that vehicle to the United States," he said.

The ute, like the Monaro, would resurrect another US car icon, the Chevrolet El Camino, which has been out of production for 20 years.

GM believes it could sell up to 100,000 El Camino utes in the US each year.
 

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edsmaroonz said:
1100 deposit- paid orders wonder what that means?? he says they could sell min 40000k a year / counting eggs before they hatch ?? 45993 is that there price??
being an aussie newsarticle i would say thats what the gto costs in australian dollar going of the current exchage rate.

I know George bush had visited australia just recently and was finalising some trade agreements, to allow australia more exports to the U.S.

100,000 El-Caminos :eek:
 

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13 year owner
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Hi, Earth to y ou people, I've been posting repeatedly about the El Camino coming back via Holden's Ute. There was even a rumored BBC option (the 496 from the trucks) floating around.
 
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