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LS7 powered HSV model expected to be unveiled at Sydney Motor Show


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This was found on the Wheels Magazine web site, and it may be the "Biggest Moment in HSV's first 20 years" that HSV is currently teasing people with on their web site.

WHEELS can exclusively reveal that HSV is set to unleash a 7.0-litre supercar at the Sydney motor show in October.

Coinciding with the company's 20th anniversary, the monster muscle car, with its thundering 385kW, 640Nm Chevrolet LS7 V8, will erase the memories of the still-born HRT 427 Coupe of 2002. Though still more than three months away from its big reveal, HSV dealers around the country are already taking deposits for what promises to be the fastest Australian car ever built.

There's no word yet on name, but HSV could dust off the unused 427 moniker, or maybe the GTS-R badges from the 2004 concept race car. Our bet is for a combination of the two, and the car to wear GTS-R 427 badging.

As the LS7 is no heavier than the 6.0-litre LS2, don't expect the GTS-R to stack on the weight. Even assuming a modest 40kg increase over the 1829kg GTS manual, the GTS-R 427 will pack a power-to-weight ratio of 206kW per tonne. For comparison, the 307kW GTS musters 'only' 168kW/tonne. And while the 7.0-litre HSV won't be able to match the lighter BMW M5's 213kW per tonne, it will crunch out 120Nm more than the Bavarian screamer. Expect performance to match the $230,000 M5, with 0-100km/h up in 4.7 seconds and a 0-400m dash in 12.6sec. Top speed, as with all HSV E-Series models, is likely to be limited to 250km/h. De-limited, it could be capable of 300km/h.

Despite the aim to have the car debut in time for this year's 20th anniversary, don't expect Holden/HSV to rush this car into immediate production without thorough testing. With 500Nm on tap across much of the rev range, the long-term effects on the axles and limited slip differentials is still an unknown.

Rather than full-scale hardware changes to accommodate the brutal grunt of the LS7, any torque limiting will be carried out in the engine management software. The ECU can be tweaked to control throttle openings, and engine power, in an effort to protect the rear end and transmission. This facility already exists on all V8-powered models in the VE range but has, so far, only been invoked to protect the six-speed auto transmission.

Like the Corvette Z06, which donates the engine, expect the LS7-powered GTS-R 427 to be available only with a six-speed manual Tremec gearbox. And the only gearbox available to HSV from the GM Powertrain catalogue capable of handling the 640Nm is the T56 MM6 version as used in the Corvette Z06. The MM6 runs taller gearing and final drive than that of the T56 M10 used in the manual GTS and Clubsport R8. At 61.5kg, it's also 2kg lighter than the M10.

To ensure exclusivity, only 100-150 of the mega sedans will be produced, with up to 10 percent making their way to New Zealand.

What will HSV charge for this limited-edition monster? HSV insiders told Wheels that the unit cost of an LS7 engine to HSV is marginally less than $20,000, and this compares favourably with the $22K unit cost of the Callaway-built C4B 5.7-litre 300kW V8 used in the VT-VY HSV flagship models. But even at close to $20,000, the LS7 costs around $12,000 more per unit than an LS2. Factor in costs of the new gearbox, plus R&D expense, and the GTS-R will likely set you back around $125,000 – $50K more than a manual 6.0-litre GTS – but just over half the price of BMW's V10 M5 sedan.

With more than three months before the big reveal, HSV is keen to deny the project. "We have no plans for a powertrain upgrade in the foreseeable future," said company spokesman Simon Frost. But with sources inside both Holden's Elizabeth plant and HSV's Clayton facility claiming the green light has already been given, Wheels is confident Australia will have a new muscle car king come October.


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:wub: :wub: This at $50K USD would be a bargain!

That won't happen. USD$50K might get you an ENTRY level HSV ... but with the 427 having an expected local price of AUD$125K, unless there was some serious price subsidization by GM, the US price would be somewhere around the USD$100K figure.
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