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I Want My Holden Ute!

Published June 27, 2012

For car enthusiasts who are not familiar with the Australian car market, you need to get your ass in gear. They have much better ideas about cars than Americans do, go download the original “Mad Max” and you will see that I mean. I have seriously contemplated moving to Australia just to buy some of the vehicles they sell there. Maybe I should just spend more on lottery tickets and when I win, buy one and have it shipped here. Both have about the same chance of happening, so until then I can only live vicariously through online reviews of others. The one vehicle in particular that I have become obsessed with is the Holden Ute.

The Holden Ute is a modern El Camino. For those of you not familiar with Holden, they are the Aussie version of Chevrolet, but with much better cars. As Australia has much less of a concern about their “carbon footprint” then the United States does, they still produce true muscle cars. This is pretty damn good for a continent where last time I inquired gas was $1.50 or so a liter, which translates into around $6 per gallon.  With gas prices, as well as the prices of everything else, so expensive “Down Under”, you would think that they would all want to drive hybrids and little cars that get great gas mileage, well guess what, they really do not care, as the Holden Ute SSV with its 19mpg, is one of its more popular muscle cars.  Take that Chevy Volt, Toyota Prius and Honda Insight.

I want a Holden SSV Ute, period.  I think it would make a fine addition to the other vehicles in my household, a 245hp Dodge Dakota V8 that gets around 12mpg and a 1981 Chevy Camaro that is in the process of being rebuilt with a 400 cubic-inch small block, which on a good day will probably get around 6 mpg. (We will not include the Honda Civic my fiancé drives to the list, as he has diplomatic immunity.) They used to blame the hole in the ozone layer on the methane from cows; I want them to blame it on me and my trio of environmentally unfriendly vehicles. You only live once, so why drive something that people like me point at you and laugh at.

Ok so back to the Holden SSV Ute, which has become the object of my obsession. Under the hood, or bonnet as they call it there, is a 365 hp, 6.0-liter OHV Gen-IV alloy V8, a 6spd manual transmission, and 19 inch alloy wheels with low profile fat tires you probably cannot even buy here. If that was not enough, get inside and it is gadget freaks heaven, with a 15 disc CD changer, navigation system, connections for your smartphone, iPod or any other electronic device you cannot live without, all controlled by a 6.5 inch touch screen. Not sold on it yet? All the reviews say it sticks to the road like an old octopus. Pack all this into a modern version of an El Camino and you have $50,000 worth of modern muscle car. Oh yeah, and one of the more popular colors is “Poison Ivy” green, need I say more?

 

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Calvin Escobar
About Calvin Escobar

The Car scene is so diverse Where I come from, most enthusiasts recognize the amazing engineering (particularly the engines). The bulk of the ridicule originates from the manner in which many of the vehicles are modded/maintained. Thus, the jokes and or hate tends to be aimed more at the owner rather than the machine. All of which makes seeing properly sorted old Toyota's and Hondas at car meets, auto shows, and track days all the more refreshing.

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