Talk about a hard act to follow. HSV was asked to step into some pretty big shoes following the amazing run Peter Brock had had with the development of the HDT brand and his sale successes with the VC, VH and VK Brock Commodores. Into this arena Tom Walkinshaw and his team stepped up to the plate with an extra ordinary car. The 1988 HSV VL SS Group A ‘Walkinshaw’. The Plastic Pig to some. A work of art to others.
Which ever side of the fence you fall, there is no doubting that the Panorama Silver Commodore is a very special and highly collectable Australian motor car. Built to homologate the Holden VL Commodore Group A race car following the dissolution of the Holden Dealer Team in 1987, the Walky was the first car to roll out of Tom Walkinshaw Racing's newly formed Holden Special Vehicles operation in Melbourne. 500 Walkinshaws were commissioned by Holden, which eventually rose to 750 to satisfy demand.
Australians had never seen anything like this before. Following extensive wind tunnel testing in the UK the Walkinshaw was fitted with aerodynamic spoilers and body panels that were said to reduce drag by over 25 per cent from the 1987 HDT SS Group A Commodore.
Things got really exciting under the bonnet. The Aussie 4.9 Litre V8, (4987cc) reduced from 5 litres to conform to Group A rules in '85, was developed by HSV primarily for the race car and then softened ever so slightly to suit the Walkinshaw’s street usage with the new injected V8 good for 180kW at 5200rpm and 380Nm at 4000rpm. The engine specifications read like a full performance parts catalogue and as it's first project for Holden, it’s safe to say that HSV left no stone unturned. This was also the first Holden V8 to feature electronic fuel injection, designed with a custom plenum and twin throttle-body intakes for better breathing and outright performance.
While this gave the VL Group A a distinctive, breathy, soundtrack, the hardware sat higher than the standard bonnet line, making the huge vented intake on the front of the Walky functional as well as distinctive.
Mated to this superb engine is a T-5 5 speed Borg-Warner gearbox that works beautifully delivering a truly unique and inspiring driving experience.
For sale is the totally original and unmolested HSV Group A Walkinshaw Build No. 397. This is a well preserved example that features all original paint and interior with Hague & Co Holden, Tanunda, SA Owner's folder, original owners log books and manuals. This Walkinshaw is in excellent original condition and has covered a genuine 147,917 kilometres from new. Open the bonnet and those wonderous twin throttle bodies, cold air induction, roller rockers, factory stickers and markings are all there.
The interior is in excellent condition throughout with minor wear to the steering wheel and gear knob befitting the age and mileage of the car while the seats are in near perfect condition having been covered in sheep skin covers since new. Seat material, carpets, and map pockets are all in very good original condition.
As they say, they're only original once and the factory applied Panorama Silver paint is in superb maintained condition. The car appears to have never been damaged or repaired and there is nil rust, with just some minor touch ups to the front bar. The factory air conditioning is working as is the original radio.
The beauty of the homologation special Commodores is that like the earlier Toranas and Monaros, these Group A Commodores aren't far removed from the competition version, so famously finished in the black and white Holden Racing Team livery.
That is why Walkinshaw values continue to skyrocket from their original $45,500 retail price cementing the VL as a desirable part of an increasingly collectible Australian ‘garage’.
For your inspection in our NEW Sydney Showroom at 26-28 Barry Avenue, Mortdale. (AMCS Ref: 5718)
AMCS will gladly arrange a video inspection/road test of the car using WhatsApp, and of course there is no issue with door to door freight delivery anywhere in Australia or New Zealand.