So. Holden has take the wraps off its new Commodore for the first time.

When I say Commodore I mean the Opel Insignia that will be known as a Commodore going forward.

And, when I say going forward, I mean after it closes its production facilities at Elizabeth in South Australia for the last time this Friday, October 20.

The first VB Commodore was a rejigged Opel back in the 70s.

Smaller than the Kingswood that it replaced it was sold to the Australian public as good on gas at a time when we were in the middle of a fuel crisis.

No one got too excited when Holden first started bringing Opels back into the country again a few years ago.

Nor did they get overly excited when it brought the cars back again, this time with a Holden badge on them a coupe of years ago.

The question remains, why should Aussies get all hot and bothered this time?

Once again the new Commodore is smaller than the Australian designed and built model that it replaces and there will not be a V8 – which means no rumbling SS.

It’s not surprising the company has chosen to launch with the all-wheel drive version of the car either.

That was predictable as it circumvents the whole front-wheel versus rear-wheel drive argument, at least in the short term (Commodores have been rear-wheel drive since day one).

The front-wheel drive version of the car will follow as sure as night follows day, after everyone has got used to the idea.

Did I mention there will be no ute either?

The ute unfortunately is a thing of the past, at least the ute as was we know it (we’re not counting commercial runabouts like the Colorado).

Oh, and I’m surprised no one has made more of the fact that V8 Supercars is now just Supercars, in preparation for a world without V8s.

Not sure how the people who throng to Bathurst every October to cheer on their team are gong to take to that scenario – a turbocharged six just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

At least Ford did the right thing and put down the Falcon.

Camry? Will anyone notice the difference?

Next generation Commodore VXR front and back.

The GM PR machine has been working overtime this week trotting out concepts and classics like the Hurricane, Torana GTR-X, and of course EFIJY in an attempt to draw attention away from the fact the factory closes on Friday – and the less appealing fact that thousands of people are about to lose their jobs.

Holden took the opportunity to reveal the ZB Commodore VXR to the Australian public for the first time this week at Motorclassica in Melbourne.

To go on sale early 2018, the VXR boasts a 3.6-litre V6 engine paired with a 9-speed tranny and adaptive all-wheel-drive, putting out 235kW of power and 381Nm of torque.

They’ve apparently spent a fair bit of time trying to engineer into the car the kind of ride and handling that Aussies will be expecting.

“It was a pleasure to reveal the ZB Commodore VXR to the Australian public for the first time and it certainly looks the part on the stand next to the previous generations of Commodore,” GM’s Australia Design Director, Richard Ferlazzo, told the gathering.

Richard, who designed EFIJY, is a really a nice bloke. Guess he must have drawn the short straw.

Riley

Chris Riley has been a journalist for almost 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.