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The GTSR is back!

31 January 2017


There’s been much speculation about HSV’s plans for 2017, and, as of February 1, they’ve officially been revealed. Yes, the rumoured GTSR is a real thing, but more than that, there are going to be three GTSR variants. The standard — for want of a better word — GTSR is, despite not being the top dog, still the most powerful vehicle HSV have offered to date. That’s thanks to the LSA engines receiving a bump in performance up to 435kW and 740NM.

As we’ve come to expect, HSV haven’t done things by half, and the vehicles will receive an impressive six-piston brake package, which sees monoblock forged aluminium calipers clamp on 410mm rotors.

To help the cars get this power to the ground, new 20-inch forged alloy wheels have been crafted measuring in at nine inches wide up front and 10 inches on the rear — that’s half an inch wider at both ends than the current range-topping GTS. 

This change in width wasn’t without its own hurdles, though; HSV chose to replace the front guards with wider GRP items to accommodate the extra girth.

The all-new GTSR-only front bumper matches the new wider look, and leaves no doubt that these cars mean business. The various cutouts all being purposeful, feeding cool air to intercoolers, oil coolers, and the radiator. 

With the new guards featuring unique fender vents, and the new front bumper having a deep splitter, the rear end has also been completely redesigned, giving an even more aggressive look.

While fans of the original 1990 GTSR may be upset about the lack of an oversized rear spoiler, the 2017 GTSRs aren’t without a unique wing — it’s just a touch more subtle. Sadly, yellow isn’t on offer either, with HSV having to work in with Holden’s factory-offered range of colours. In saying that, three new colours have been released to the market, Spitfire (bright green), Son of a Gun (Charcoal), and Light My Fire (gold), all of which would look great with the GTSR’s staunch bodywork.

It’s expected that the GTSRs will be a hit with collectors and drivers alike, however it’s the GTSR W1 that will really set hearts racing. The W1s are essentially a complete custom build, of which just over 200 will be produced.

The big talking point of the W1 is the Corvette ZR1-sourced LS9 engines and transmissions. HSV are quick to point out that it wasn’t simply a matter of plucking Corvette parts off the production line, though, with both the driveline, and the vehicles themselves, requiring modifications to be compatible with each other.

Included in those HSV-specific changes were modifications to the dry-sump oiling system and a unique carbon-fibre air intake, along with reworked ratios within the Tremec TR6060 manual gearbox. 

Even at a price of $189,990 NZD, we have no doubt that the cars will all be pre-sold, likely even before the specifications become public knowledge.

If you don’t have that sort of money free, or even the $130,990 NZD required for a run-of-the-mill GTSR, you could potentially pick up a Maloo GTSR for an investment of $117,490 NZD.

Even though the GTSRs are the big talking point, HSV haven’t neglected the rest of the range of models, with the 410kW supercharged LSA engines now becoming the base spec of HSV’s offerings.

With 2017 seeing the marque’s 30th anniversary, all models wear appropriate badging and plaques bearing the HSV30 name.

The Clubsport R8 LSA, R8 LSA Tourer, and LSA R8 Maloo ($102,990, $106,990, and $98,990 NZD respectively in manual guise, plus a few grand more in auto), all receive the torque vectoring previously only available on the GTS. They also feature new matte-black wheels and a recalibration to the bi-modal exhaust, which sees the car’s exhaust noise more audible from lower in the rev range — something customers have been asking for. 

Senator Signature receives a similar upgrade, with the previously option-only SV Rapier wheels now fitted as stock, as well as the addition of torque vectoring and the 30-year branding, while the GTS gets the matte-black wheels and bi-modal recalibration.

HSV New Zealand’s Regional Manager, Andrew Lamb, mentioned to NZV8 that due to limited parts being available from some suppliers, supply of the vehicles is reduced and they may sell out quickly. He recommends that if customers are interested they will need to get in quick, as once they’re gone, there’s no more available. While it’s a common sales pitch to say such things, this time around it’s for real, snooze and you’ll lose

The first of the HSV30 models will land in late February, although GTSR and GTSR W1 are not scheduled to commence production until mid April.

If you want to get your hands on one, you’d best give your nearest HSV dealer a call today!