A Vauxhall in badge only, Holden’s barely anglicised ute is as raw, pointless and brilliant as ever.
There are not many cars that can truly draw the attention of the Beautiful People who meander along the seafront at Cannes. Lamborghinis? They see loads of ’em. Classic Ferraris? Rien especial. Porsches? Deja vu, mon ami.
It’s a brute of a ute, mate (etc).
A bright yellow pick-up with huge alloys, a rear cargo shelf like the deck of container ship and a rumbling V8 exhaust note, on the other hand, gathers quite a crowd. Well, we say a pick-up – that’s probably an inappropriate description of the Vauxhall VXR8 Maloo, as it evokes a jacked-up 4×4-esque commercial vehicle.
Other countries have made such things – the Subaru Brat, VW Caddy and Ford Sierra-based P100 being prime examples. Australians, though, have made the ute concept their own, the term first being applied to a Ford in the early 30s and to arch-rival Holden a couple of years later. And it’s a rivalry that continues to this day, with Ford and Holden battling one another in the hugely popular Ute racing series that supports the V8 Supercars.
Turns more heads than a supercar.
Maloos have been around for some time in Holden guise and this ‘E3’ is based largely on the Commodore R8 saloon (E3 being the latest version), known in the UK as the Vauxhall VXR8,driven on the same roads by our man Towler this time last year. Hence the Vauxhall badges that replace the Holden ones everywhere except on the steering wheel boss – you can order this car now from Vauxhall as the VXR8 Maloo for the princely sum of £51,500. Just make sure you call us for your Holden Maloo insurance.
Many thanks to Pistonheads for letting us use the above article. The complete version can be found here.