General Motors’ trademark application for the registration ‘GTSR’ has strengthening reports that Holden Special Vehicles has bought 100 supercharged V8 engines from the US to power a final model based on the VF II Commodore sedan.
The engine is the boosted 6.2-litre LS9 unit used in the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. It delivers 476kW/819Nm, output that would make a final-edition HSV Commodore the most powerful Australian muscle car ever.
The trademark application was registered two weeks ago, on December 2, and covers both vehicles and merchandise. It in no way confirms that a ‘GTSR’ will be built, but it supports talk across the ditch that HSV wants to build a special signature Commodore model before Holden stops making the car in 2017.
HSV product and marketing manager Damon Paull would neither confirm or deny reports that the LS9 engines were already in Australia.
The hand-built LS9 unit would be an easy fit under a VF II Commodore bonnet as it shares the same aluminium block and cylinder head as the supercharged 6.2-litre LSA engine in the current HSV Gen-F2 GTS, which is good for 430kW/740Nm.
But the LS9 has a bigger supercharger, forged pistons, lighter valves, and a unique crankshaft and conrods. It also runs a dry sump, rather than the wet sump in the GTS.
HSV would fit larger brakes in such a car, with the Corvette ZR1’s carbon-ceramics as an option. Of course, a GTSR would wear a unique body kit.
The nameplate was last used on the HSV GTS-R, a VS Commodore built in 1995-1996 to resemble the Holden Racing Team V8 Supercars. Only 85 were made, each in a burnt yellow colour called ‘Yellah’ and priced from A$75,000.
It was the first production HSV to feature external carbon fibre decals on the wheels and side skirts. Under the bonnet was a 5.7-litre V8 producing 215kW/475Nm, but 12 of the 85 were further tuned to boost output to 226kW/507Nm. The blueprinted models cost A$86,000.
The original GTS-R proved quite an investment for owners, with build number two selling in 2008 for A$200,000. Another was recently for sale in Australia for A$100,000.