Holden closer to building ZR1-engined super sedan

Holden has two years of production left in Australia before factories down there go dark for good, and for months now rumors have posited the revival of the Holden HSV GTS-R model as a last hurrah. Those rumors just got a boost with the discovery that on December 2, General Motors filed a trademark application for "GTSR" for vehicles and merchandise.

A trademark application is not a sign of production intent, but if such a vehicle arrives, outsiders aren't sure what would power the sedan. Back in August it was reported that GM sold Holden 100 units of the supercharged 6.2-liter LS9 V8 from our dearly beloved Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. On US territory that engine made 638 horsepower and 604 pound-feet of torque. A ZR1-powered Holden has been an ongoing rumor for the past eight years.

Other publications have said that Holden had to fight to get the supercharged 6.2-liter LSA V8 that it's using in the recently introduced HSV range - the same engine we get in the Camaro ZL1 - and it will want to make the most of that investment rather than engineering a brand new, limited-run powerplant. The LSA option would get power upgrades over the current flagship HSV model, the GTS with 577 hp and 546 lb-ft, perhaps putting out as much as 637 hp and 590 lb-ft. No matter which engine it gets, it will outdo the 471-hp V8 used in the final edition Ford Falcon FPV GT-F.

The first and so-far-only HSV GTS-R was unveiled in 1996 to celebrate Holden's domination of the V8 Supercars series. Holden built 85 of them, every single one the same "Yellah" color to honor the racecar that inspired it. Thirteen of the 85 had their 5.7-liter V8 engines blueprinted, increasing horsepower from 288 hp to 304 hp. The result was so good that when Car and Driver pitted one against a BMW M5 in 2001 it beat the German dynamically, only losing the final vote due to "some easily fixed deficiencies in quality and refinement." The price for a revived GTS-R is estimated to be around $120,000 Australian dollars, about $25,000 more than the GTS. Like its progenitor, it could come with a "personalized apparel pack" for the few lucky buyers.

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