• 2011 Holden Ute
  • 2011 Holden Ute

With the Holden Commodore sedan on its way back to the States as the Chevrolet SS, we were hoping that the El Camino-like, two-seat Ute wouldn't be far behind (after all, the halfbreed was supposed to be offered here as the Pontiac G8 Sport Truck before General Motors offed the brand altogether). Unfortunately, however, the Aussies have been informed that the Ute falls under our light commercial tariff rate of 35 percent – roughly three times the rate on passenger vehicle imports.

"We were hopeful at one stage, we thought we might be able to duck in under it, but it was ruled out," Holden executive director Richard Phillips tells the Herald Sun. "With the dollar where it is, exports can only be pursued that are niche... and profitable in this environment."

Bummer.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 68 Comments
      Jake
      • 2 Years Ago
      Yay tarrifs. Consumers don't get the product to choose and the government doesn't collect the tax revenue anyway. Fail/Fail
        Weezle Eye
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Jake
        Yep, get the government involved in choice and it will always = FAIL!
        Quen
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Jake
        How is this stupid chicken tax still around? This was enacted in the early 60's for something that isn't an issue anymore.
      The Wasp
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hey GM, bolt a sheet of plastic/metal over the box -- voilá, it's a 'coupe'! Just forget it if you want to charge $40k for it, though.
      lordedardstark1
      • 2 Years Ago
      I thought it would be cool if GM would bring Pontiac back, but it would only be import models such as the Commodore and Ute. They already had a cool thing with the G8 and I was sad to see it go so soon. It's one of the few under 50K cars that I see on the road that I actually stare at. I think that a few Opel/Vauxhall models would be cool to. Think of GEO...
      Don G
      • 2 Years Ago
      How cool would have it been if maybe 500 or so of these Pontiac El Caminos had made it over before Pontiac was killed off. Talk about a collectors item. Would have been cool to at least have seen one in the flesh.
      Dr. Claw
      • 2 Years Ago
      They need to kill the chicken tax. Its original purpose is no longer needed. (actually, its original purpose wasn't even needed... they eventually made the Bronco and S-10).
      spietan
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hmm - 35% duty? I think its 25%. Still too high.
      FuelToTheFire
      • 2 Years Ago
      I never understood all the rage with small trucks; for only a little bit more cash, you can get a proper sized pickup. Better safety, more comfy ride, and with its behemouth size, you feel macho as hell driving it and you feel as if you're commanding the road.
        EXP Jawa
        • 2 Years Ago
        @FuelToTheFire
        Not everyone wants or needs that which you deem to be a "proper" sized truck. Especially when so many of them have ballooned to substantially larger than proper. I, for one, as a former owner of a couple Rangers and current owner of a Ranchero, would very much like to see a small truck reintroduced. Be it a Ford, a GM or a Jeep. A small, 1/2T-rated 4WD pickup would be all I need to carry around bicycles, tow a camper, or get where ever I want to go offroad.
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 2 Years Ago
      Well, this highlights how protectionism of industry can hurt everyone. Here we have a branch of an american company not being able to send their car back to the united states without paying excessive taxes. Look this up on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_tax
      hdcjm1
      • 2 Years Ago
      How many people here in the states would honestly buy this car? It is a cool car however, I highly doubt anyone would have a feasible use for something like this in the states.
        domingorobusto
        • 2 Years Ago
        @hdcjm1
        Everybody who is currently out in the cold for a truly small truck (since now that the Ranger and Colorado are dead the smallest truck you can get now is the Frontier, and even it's sort of huge) would probably take a look as a viable alternative. It would suit the needs of most people who just need a small open bed hauler just fine.
        4gasem
        • 2 Years Ago
        @hdcjm1
        Not in this country of "BIGGER IS BETTER" 4x4 Quad cabs!
        Matthew
        • 2 Years Ago
        @hdcjm1
        Well works just fine here in Australia, It might not sell as many numbers as your SUV's do, But even 20,000+ sales a year would be a big boost for Holden.. Doesnt have to sell massive amounts seeing as it along with the wagon are all designed around the same platform under pinning the Commodore (and the Caprice).. 3 vehicle types in one platform, If all brought to the US then they would make there money and more.
        Daniel D
        • 2 Years Ago
        @hdcjm1
        If they sold 20000 or so a year or even 10000, it would be a drop in the ocean for the US market, but a big deal for Holden. They were always going to be niche.
      Weezle Eye
      • 2 Years Ago
      With the demise of the Ranger, the absence of a Subaru Brat,... it's a shame GM can't find a way to bring this to the States.
      EJD1984
      • 2 Years Ago
      The cold hard question - Is there really a viable market here in North America to justify a new El Camino type vehicle? Even if the truck was manufactured here, it seems like a hard business case to make. The last El Camino's of the 1980s had been reduced down to a niche vehicle, and was eventually deemed unpractical by the popular S10 truck. Don't get me wrong, I'd love for the Holden Ute to come here, but even when there is current market trouble for the Colorado, I just don't see it really happening.
        4gasem
        • 2 Years Ago
        @EJD1984
        It's a two seater... That limits its demographic to singles, married without children, married with children out of the house, or some rich guy that wants one as a "toy". I'm married with child and one on the way, drive a G8GT and have a '98 F150 standard cab that sits more than it's driven... I wouldn't buy this thing for anything. What I'm getting at is what you're saying... It's a "niche" vehicle. Sales would be low and profit would probably be negative.
          Daniel D
          • 2 Years Ago
          @4gasem
          The whole idea of the ute is there is only room for your mate and the missus, has to stay at home barefoot and pregnant. On the other hand there is plenty of room in the tray for your beer. Thats the Aussie solution for ya.
          Robert Ryan
          • 2 Years Ago
          @4gasem
          Here it is a "Corvette without a Bed" and actually sells more than the Corvette in the US.
        Robert Ryan
        • 2 Years Ago
        @EJD1984
        Manufacturing is not feasible. See my prior comments about the Free trade Agreement
      Justin Campanale
      • 2 Years Ago
      Do what Subaru did with the Brat. Put fake seats in the bed to make it pass restrictions.
        montoym
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Justin Campanale
        Or Ford with the Transit Connect. Just ship them here in pieces and put them together here.
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