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TOYOTA AND HOLDEN TO SHARE NEXT GENERATION COMMODORE
- HOLDEN GETS LANDCRUISER IN RETURN
- TOYOTA READIES V8 SUPERCAR ATTACK


EXCLUSIVE: Toyota Australia is set to join brands like Opel, Saab, Buick, Holden and Chevrolet in developing a car based on General Motors' global rear-drive architecture. The stunning move will surely send shockwaves through the Australian car industry, and will have serious global ramifications as two of the world's heavyweights combine to crush the competition.

Sources within both camps have confirmed that "plans are well under way" for Toyota to get the VE Commodore platform, which it will use as a replacement for Avalon. In return, Holden is believed to be making $100 million per year on the deal, and, says our highly placed Holden source, "it also opens up discussions over Holden utilising Toyota's strong 4WD portfolio".

"[Holden CEO Denny] Mooney sees it as another step in securing Holden's future as the centre of excellence for rear-wheel-drive architecture within General Motors' empire. He thinks it's fantastic that Toyota has seen the potential of GM's Zeta architecture, which is likely to be exported to four continents."

Our Holden source, who works in Holden's Liaisons with Industry and Economies of Scale department, hinted that this may just be the first of many Holden/Toyota collaborations. "I've seen memos on desks relating to discussions with Toyota about using the Global V6 engine, and possibly even the Gen IV V8. I've even seen schematics of Holden's all-wheel-drive technology under an Avalon bodyshell."

Holden is one of only two manufacturing operations in the world building the Global V6, which will be available in 2.8 to 3.6 litre capacities, both naturally aspirated and with forced induction. It will be offered in rear and all-wheel-drive configurations.

This seemingly shocking collaboration between Australia's two biggest sellers makes perfect sense in light of a couple of statements made recently by Mooney at a media dinner in February. At the time he said: "Toyota sells 45,000 four-wheel-drives a year, we sell 5000. You can't expect to give that much of a free kick to your rivals if you're determined to be Number One."

Mooney is keen to add a compact, medium and large four-wheel-drive to Holden's lineup in the quickest possible time, and it would seem as though Toyota's RAV4, Prado and LandCruiser fit the bill.

From Toyota's point of view, the move would appear to be the only way to tackle the big Aussie sedans head on. Sources within Toyota's future products department, Creation and Rationalisation of Automotive Prototypes, revealed "we've been struggling to get Avalon accepted for years now, throwing good money after bad in a vain attempt to change Australia's opinions of the car, but it hasn't worked.

"So we're going back to the drawing board in a full scale attempt to beat Commodore and Falcon in the sales race. And we figured, 'what better vehicle to challenge the big, rear-drive Aussie sedans than a big, rear-drive Aussie sedan.'"

This collaboration between Holden and Toyota is nothing new. It's been tried once before with the VR Commodore that Toyota sold as the Lexcen. Unfortunately, the Lexcen was swamped by the ill-feeling towards a number of other Toyota-Holden badge-engineering projects, including the Camry/Apollo and Corolla/Nova.

Toyota and Holden are expected to make a formal announcement in a special signing ceremony on April 1 on the top of the Westgate Bridge. CarPoint understands the location was chosen because it is exactly half way between Holden's home at Fishermen's Bend and Toyota's Altona manufacturing plant. The first components will ship immediately after, allowing Toyota to begin development work as quickly as possible.

Toyota insiders say its about time the Australian subsidiary took charge of its own future. "We've been showing Toyota Japan for years now that we're ready," said our source, "both from an engineering perspective with the X-Runner and then on a design front with the Sportivo concept.

"We will officially start work on project VETO (VE-Toyota) after the naming ceremony, but let me tell you -- off the record -- the work's already begun. It has to if we're going to make our 2006 launch date."

Conspicuous by his presence at Toyota Australia last week was global MotorSport boss Tsutomu Tomita, lending weight to speculation that Toyota will use the VE Avalon as the basis for a V8 Supercar attack. Our source would not be drawn on this subject, hiding behind a non-committal "We do not comment on future Commodore-killing motorsport products", however the tea lady confirmed the rumour for us.

"You can't hope to beat Ford and Holden in the showroom without beating them on the track," she said over a nice cup of Earl Grey. "And to beat them on track you need a top notch driver. Now I can't reveal too much, but I will say we stole Greg Norman from Holden last year, this year we've gone one better. I can't tell you [the driver's] name, but I can say that it rhymes with Peter Shock and no-one has won more Bathurst titles."

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Can someone at GM tell me why?? This is nonsense why let them in an awesome new RWD & AWD platform???
 

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So does this mean that their new Supra might run on an Commondare platform, and then would it be sold in the US?
 

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I hope that this news is a joke (e.g., "...Toyota and Holden are expected to make a formal announcement in a special signing ceremony on April 1 on the top of the Westgate Bridge..."). I believe the Zeta platform is too promising to share with Toyota in return for the the Landcruiser(!?). How 'bout Holden using GM NAO's strong 4WD platforms.

If this is true, I would hope it's akin to the Hitler/Mussolini tie-up, in which Hitler promised to share world domination with his Italian counterpart (wink, wink, nudge, nudge).
 

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well well aren't GM and toyota getting ever-friendlier! there have always been ties, but they seem to be growing stronger. maybe GM should buy them out and sell toyotas as saturns. but what about scion? hmmm... maybe geo can make a comeback.
 

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Originally posted by Butta@Mar 30 2004, 09:25 PM
I have a feeling Toyota will be using Zeta for their next gen Lexus'. WHY WHY WHY???
well apparently the GM platform is exactly what they need! i think it's awesome news. pretty damn encouraging... i didn't see many cavalier-based corollas over the past few years. even though toyota isn't bulletproof, they've ALWAYS attempted to sell quality vehicles... that speaks volumes for the quality of the zeta platform, if toyota will use it for one of their vehicles. very good indeed!
 

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This has got to be BS. Holden just went #2 in sales after Toyota in Australia, why would they give up there brand new chassis that might put them ahead of Toyota? Not to mention that ....omg I cant even begin to tell you how pissed off and confused I am. I am at a loss for words. This makes zero sence and I pray that its fake.
I dont see this being good at all.
 

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I think someone might be pulling my 3rd leg......... <_<




Holden's Liaisons with Industry and Economies of Scale departmentCreation and Rationalisation of Automotive Prototypes



L.I.E.S?

C.R.A.P.?
 

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Originally posted by MCGARRETT@Mar 30 2004, 10:03 PM
I think someone might be pulling my 3rd leg......... <_<




Holden's Liaisons with Industry and Economies of Scale departmentCreation and Rationalisation of Automotive Prototypes



L.I.E.S?

C.R.A.P.?
Good catch. I clicked on the link, and kept looking around to see if it led to some dead end web site, but it seems to be legit? Also, this doesnt seem to be the first time this has happend. Holden gave Toyota a Commadore in the past. I dont know what the heck is going on...

Toyota will be using an LS2.... Could you imagine that the Supra and Camaro could be based off teh same chassis, using the same engine?
 

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Ive seen simular April fools pranks pulled that upset people quite a bit. But then again at this point in history anything is possible.
 

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Toyota will be using an LS2.... Could you imagine that the Supra and Camaro could be based off teh same chassis, using the same engine?


The Import Snobs would s**t kittens....

It had me going for a few minutes while I read the whole article....
 

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I actually like the idea of two huge "superpowers" combining to crush the competition. Sweet!
 

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I dont understand what Holden would want out of the Landcruser that they couldnt get from GM NA? Bring the GMT-500 suv's down there, Holden dresses them up with there quality, and we dont have to give away our chassis to anyone. And how about a GMT-360 designed by Holden with there own sheetmetal? Or why not just make a crossover based off the Zeta chassis? If the SRX can be based of a sigma, a Holden wagon can be based of Zeta. Am I just not seeing something? Is there something that I am missing? If this is true, why Holden, why?
Lutz needs to get down there and start ruffing up thoes aussies.
 
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