Here are twelve things you may not know about the all new Commodore.
1: Commodore is sold in UK markets by Opel and Vauxhall as an Insignia, and by Buick as a Regal.
Commodore is manufactured in Rüsselsheim (in the Rhein-Main region), Germany. Rüsselsheim am Main is the largest city in the Groß-Gerau district.
2: This is the first Commodore to feature a transverse engine and transmission.
Transverse (or East-West) engines create more space in the cabin, especially in the front seats. Instead of the engine being fitted the cylinders in a line from the front to the back of the engine bay, the engine is turned 90° and sits across the engine bay. The transmission no longer intrudes in to the front of the cabin. Even in the All Wheel Drive model, the tunnel that runs down the middle of the floor is much smaller than in the old Commodore.
3: Despite being slightly smaller than the car it replaced, interior space has barely changed.
In fact, the Sportwagon has slightly more headroom in the rear. Because the centre hump in the floor is smaller, the passengers don’t need to be so far apart, and the interior makes better use of the space. The large car segment has been in slow but steady design for well over a decade. Holden is aiming the new car at the medium-to-large car segment.
4: First Commodore to have a diesel engine.
The 3-option engine range features a 2.0L diesel, 2.0L petrol with 4 cylinders, and a 3.6L V6. The 2.0L petrol was first seen in the new Equinox SUV. The 3.6 V6 is a heavy makeover of the previous Commodore engine. The V8 has been dropped.
5: First Commodore to have a 9-speed auto.
The petrol models get the new 9-speed GM developed automatic, while diesels have an AISIN 8-speed auto. Holden engineers say that 9-speed unit was unable to handle the torque from the 2.0L engine.
The 9-speed is a “sealed” transmission, so has no filler tube. The driver never has to worry about oil levels.
6: First Commodore to be developed at the infamous Nürburgring.
Driving on Australian roads is very different to the speeding around a carefully curated racetrack. So, Holden’s engineers took the Nürburgring Euro suspension tuning, and gave it the Lang Lang polish.
We drove Commodore on the very same roads at Holden’s secret Proving Ground. The mix of roads with gravel, sand, dirt, and tarmac have potholes, undulations, and off-camber corners, that the very worst of Australian roads offer.
We drove a Euro-tuned car for comparison, which highlighted the importance of local tuning. It also demonstrated the importance the US parent, GM, places on Holden’s Australian input to development.
New Commodore has multiple suspension tunings depending on body style.
7: First Commodore to feature HiPer Strut front suspension.
This is sophisticated set-up that reconfigures the way the ball joint at the bottom of the damper connects to the steering rack.
8: First Commodore with the “Twinster” AWD system.
A particularly clever AWD system that will not only shunt power front and rear in different proportions, but also side to side.
The LSD (limited slip differential) has viscous clutches on each rear shaft. This mechanical set-up differs from computerized systems which use ABS to brake spinning wheels.
9: The first Commodore to feature an “Active Bonnet”.
The hardest part of the front of a car is the engine block itself. Under normal circumstances, there is little room between the top of the engine and the underside of the bonnet.
The aluminium bonnet has pyrotechnic hinges. A sensor triggers after pedestrian contact causing the Active Bonnet to fire a charge (at each hinge) similar to that in an airbag. IT instantly raises the trailing edge of the bonnet. These few centimetres increase the pedestrian’s chance of survival.
10: The first Commodore to feature a rear hatch.
There is a sedan body style of this car in some markets, but Holden has chosen the hatch-back for the flexibility of interior space. With the rear seats up, the space is no market leading, but is none-the-less generous at 552L this increases dramatically to 1450L with the seats down.
There is also a wagon and tourer version
11: The first Holden to feature the next-gen 32-LED Matrix headlights.
The 16 LED version first made an appearance on the new Astra. Commodore’s LED matrix headlights use 32 cells to adapt in High Beam mode. They turn off individual LEDs so that oncoming traffic remains undazzled, while High Beam continues to illuminate the sides of the road.
As the oncoming car moves through the field of view, the system monitoring the movement turns LEDs on and off, leaving as much of the road as possible in High Beam.
Unlike other systems, Commodore doesn’t mistake well-lit road signs for headlights. We gave the system a thorough test, and it appears to differentiate between streets lights, road signs, and headlights.
12: The first Commodore to feature: front AND rear heated seats (with ventilated in some models), 360° camera, lane departure and assist, massaging front seats, handsfree tailgate on wagons, side blind zone alert, wireless phone charging, and active noise cancellation.
Holden’s Commodore is dead and The new Commodore is here. Recently launched at the Lang Lang Proving Grounds in Victoria, the all new Commodore is very different to the model it replaces.