• Feb 28th 2008 at 8:00PM
  • 27
Click image for a hi-res gallery of the HSV W427

The modern American auto show circuit has turned into a series of venues at which automakers try to out-green or out-crossover each other, with the occasional fire-breather thrown in. Down in Australia, it's like the late 60s or early 70s, with a power-mad pissing contest between GM and Ford going full-tilt. We already saw Holden's killer flex-fuel muscle concept, the Coupe 60. Now it's time for the skunkworks to unveil its newest street missile. We previewed it this morning, but here it is in all its glory: the HSV W427. The "W" is a nod to Tom Walkinshaw, whose TWR crew joined up with Holden in 1988 to create the Group A VL SS Commodore, a homologation special that marked the birth of GM's Australian factory performance division, HSV.

The 427 represents the engine's size in cubic inches, as in GM LS7 V8 cubic inches. The Corvette Z06's heart has been transplanted into the VE Commodore's body, which has been substantially modified with a unique blackened fascia (you might also call it "ugly," or more diplomatically, "menacing"); updated aero bits all around; new 20" wheels; and an immeasurable amount of testosterone. That's what the LS7 brings to the party -- no blue pills required. Final power numbers aren't yet available, but HSV expects them to be in excess of 496 horses and 472 lb-ft. That should make the W427 the fastest Aussie street-legal supercar ever produced. All the good Corvette trickery is in play, too: magnetic ride control, big brakes, and the bi-modal exhaust system are among the hidden goodies that make it the ultimate super saloon. Quantities will be limited, but lucky owners will feel like every road is Bathurst.

HSV's press release is pasted after the jump.

[Source: HSV]
Holden Special Vehicles unveil seven litre Supercar the W427

Holden Special Vehicles unveil seven litre Supercar the W427
Holden Special Vehicles today unveiled a seven litre program at the Melbourne Motor Show, the last instalment of the company s 20th anniversary celebrations.

The car to be known in its final development stages as the W427 is finished in the same Panorama Silver paint scheme as the original Group A SS VL Commodore, released at the Melbourne Motor Show of 1988, exactly 20 years ago.

HSV Managing Director, Scott Grant, said the W427 was a tribute to how far the company has come in just twenty years.

"To be able to produce a vehicle of these proportions is truly remarkable," Scott Grant said.

"The W427 will be quite possibly the fastest road registrable Supercar ever produced in Australia and among the quickest anywhere around the world," he said.

While power output figures are still to be confirmed, the W427 is likely to produce in excess of 370kW of power and 640NM of torque.

"It will also be one of the safest cars HSV has ever put on the road," Scott Grant said.

"A new six piston front braking system will provide a 50% increase in pad area, while the W427 also receives a revised ESP calibration, six air bags, improved handling and new Magnetic Ride Control settings."

The W427 receives a bimodal active exhaust system to improve noise quality and back pressure management.

Styling and design highlights include an all new front fascia, a three piece carbon fibre rear spoiler, 20 inch machined faced alloy wheel, unique exhaust tips and red leather interior.

Scott Grant said HSV would be introducing a unique customer relations program to accompany the launch of the new vehicle.

"The W427 will only be produced in limited numbers and we want to reflect that exclusivity in how we connect with our Supercar customers," Scott Grant said.

"This program will see the LS7 engine being fitted at Clayton, along with the dry sump system and a range of other engineering features. We are looking at opportunities to allow owners to visit HSV and view the unique manufacturing process that goes into building this car."

The W427 will go into production in the middle of the year and will be available for sale in dealerships in the third quarter of 2008.

"Make no mistake, while the specifications of the car unveiled on the stand today at the Motorshow may change slightly between now and when production begins, this car is destined to make as big an impact as the original Walkinshaw twenty years ago."

W427 key highlights*


All new Front Fascia exclusive to W427

All new three piece rear spoiler in carbon fibre

All new 20 inch wheel


HSV performance seats in full red hot trim with W427 logo, steering wheel, gear shifter and console lid in full red hot leather


7.0 Litre, LS7 Engine with HSV specific calibration

o 370kW @ 6500 rpm

o 640Nm @ 5000 rpm

Over radiator style cold air induction system with high flow air filter

Dry sump lubrication system with 2 stage pump

Hand fabricated aluminium oil reservoir, with internal baffles for high G loading

Front mount, 13 row engine oil cooler

Ceramic coated, high flow four into one extractors

High flow catalytic converters and exhaust system (3 into 2 ¾ )

Active bi-modal rear mufflers for exhaust back pressure management to improve noise quality

High strength limited slip differential

New high strength six speed manual gear box (TR6060)

GMPT LS7 Clutch with new actuator and pedal assembly for high clamp loads


New springs, 30% stiffer than GTS

Revised ride height 20mm lower than GTS

New stiffer rear suspension bushing

All new MRC calibration


New 6 piston front braking system (50% increase in pad area)

Strap drive, 2 piece floating front rotors (380 x 35mm compared to 365 x

32mm one piece on GTS)

High friction pad material

* Specifications of W427 as at Melbourne Motor Show

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      Well how about a GTR R35 V Spec Nissan, That's One jappa that will still whip this old pushrod V8 low-tech ugly bucket of bolt-ons into next week..
      GTR Specs
      * 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds
      * 11.7 seconds in the quarter mile
      * 192 mph top speed
      and almost buy two GTR's for the price of one commodore.
      Holden go home and be honest with yourself, how many $150,000 commodores do you really expect to sell, (oh that's right your target buyers are meant to be thick. I think you have actually beaten yourselves at your own game, the 60 Coupe is a lot nicer looking.
        • 7 Years Ago
        considering a GTR already costs more than this car, the V-spec will cost a lot more...and be considerably uglier.
        both being GT style cars the extra performance of the GTR counts for not much, and you don't get that retarded warranty and GPS nanny in this car.
      • 7 Years Ago
      It's not just the grill, the entire car is stupid. The thing will cost the same as a GT-R (I'm talking about in Australia), yet won't ever be faster than an EVO or STi. The current HSVs are barely any faster than the Commodore SS, and this thing is double the normal HSV money for a couple tenths faster acceleration. The Coupe 60, and even the production Sportwagon just revealed in Melbourne are far superior cars to this thing.

      Truly is hideous as well, looks like someone got a Commodore into Need for Speed Underground... Why they made it look like this instead of a street legal V8 Supercar I'll never understand.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Won't be faster than an STi or Evo? Are you mad?! Can STi's do 0-100km/h in 4.4 seconds? Ugly? What do you want? What would you prefer? What would you present the designers with. Please, everyone throw in your suggestions. This car is a beautiful beast. If you can find a better performing car at a better price, then please let us know. STi's are for Jap wanna-bes who can't drive so they buy something with AWD. Anybody can drive a car with AWD, seriously, it's not that difficult.
        • 7 Years Ago
        JDM EVO IXs can do 0-100km/h in around 4.8, and the STi RA-R in particular is even faster than that. The claimed 0-100 for this is 4.7, and knowing HSV that's pretty optimistic. I wasn't just talking about acceleration times either, but track performance. Which is especially relevant considering HSV are actually calling this a "supercar". There's no way this'll be faster around any track than an STi or EVO, even high-speed ovals since this has a 250km/h limiter. Current HSVs already get slaughtered in corner speeds compared to those two cars, and something with even more weight and power is going to be even worse.

        This is basically the HSV version of that crappy FPV Cobra. Not much more than a marketing stunt. Any actual performance enthusiast would be far better off spending $15-20k on tyres, wheels, brakes, suspension and turbos on a Commodore SS and making a far faster and better looking car than the W427.

        Look at the old HRT 427 Concept to see a car Holden actually should have built for a flagship. It would have actually deserved the kind of money it would have cost in the eyes of hardcore Holden fans.
      • 7 Years Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      Yeah I'm gonna have to go with Ugly on this one... its hot, and fast, but still ugly.
      • 7 Years Ago
      $30k = Pontiac G8 GT
      $50k = BMW 535i
      $58k = BMW 550i

      Explain those 'won't be any faster' and 'fair contest' bits to me again?
      • 7 Years Ago
      I like this car... a lot.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Isn't she sweet. don't forget its limited production. STI and EVO's are SOOOOO common these days. This. This is just so sweet, so much power, so much torque. But wait, whats that sound I hear? THE STIG crying " I JUST WANT ONE"
      • 7 Years Ago
      Good lord man! i would rather drive an aztek than this thing,lipsick wont help this pig.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Oops. I meant the Coupe 60 as a basis for the GTO, not a four door sedan. Still say grills are a minor detail compared to the overall presence of the vehicle.
      • 7 Years Ago
      'The G8 Gt is being compared to the BMW 550i. They say it holds its own against it. The higher end G8 GXP should kick the pants out of the Bimmer.'

      In a straightline, sure. We'll have to wait and see how it does in the other tests. Personally I'm betting the Bimmers suspension geometry will allow it to win out overall.
      Bimmers ain't about big horsepower or screaming speed. This is why MB keeps adding hp to their M3 competitor yet keeps losing to the M3.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Holden's Calais V-series is a mid-luxury variant of Pontiac G8 GT and appears to do well against BMW 550i - despite the massive price disparity.

        "We'd happily choose the Calais V-series V8 over a 550i, even if money wasn't an object. Of the three, it's the best driver's car, even though its handling edge isn't as marked as the E500's superiority in ride and refinement."

      • 7 Years Ago
      That is one cool looking car.
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